Tuesday, July 10, 2018

The Truth of "Three Loves of a Lifetime": Love Starts, Within

So, there's a new iteration of an article I read years ago that talks about the "3 Loves of a Lifetime". (I posted a link to the recent article, below, for anyone interested in reading the recent re-telling of the idea.)

I remember the original article I read, years ago - because it was targeted to men. I was sitting at my high top kitchen table, re-purposed from the bar we worked at in our part time when we weren't college students or working as production assistants on films and as modeling coaches: exciting, right? I was barely 20 years old, reading it to my then (and briefly done), first Husband. The article I was reading had a bit more of a "starter marriage" feel to it, and enumerated many of the reasons why - men - in particular, would have (in this order) a childhood sweetheart, a marriageable wife (whatever that means - I guess one that their Mom chooses?), and then the "real" love of their life.

I really never thought this applied to me, but now I think about the "3"... and it makes sense, in a very different way. 

I had a few boys through Jr High and High School that I had crushes on - including Christian Hosoi, Rob Lowe, and Al Jourgensen from Ministry (if you don't know how hot he was in the 80's, then you don't know Ministry) - who all sort of counted as that first stirrings of physical and mental attraction. Almost none of them were attainable, except for the few who decided I wasn't too nerdy or weird to kiss, and certainly taught me little except that I wanted to know love like my Grandparents had. Theirs was a love of joy and pleasure of being together, but I was too immature to understand why at that time. I also had an incredibly difficult home life with parents who were un-equipped to have a highly empathic daughter. I hated myself because my parents didn't understand me and by the time I entered college, I had such poor self esteem that I didn't care how thin I got due to the controlling eating disorder I have had since I was 10.

Then there was my first Husband - who was actually a re-bound from someone who was "pleasing to my Father". There you go, I guess that sums up #2, along with the fact that it would take me another 20 years to finally create the appropriate boundaries with my father that would allow me to move on in my life, emotionally. My first legal Ex was also exciting. Not only was he a DJ, but he had an in with modeling agencies and film, and living the lifestyle of creative art (and the ego boost of money and self promotion that comes with it) were highly addictive. Not that there is anything wrong with either of those things, but it was wrong for me to be doing them - with him - and what woke me up from it was having my oldest daughter. So, in a way, my #2 love was actually my daughter Sydney (and almost 10 years later, her brother and sister), who I grew up for. Granted, it took me over a decade of adult-hood to grow up (and I'm still a work in progress), but the trend of a life worth loving is long. They made me want to be a better person, and to fight all my internal demons to get there.

The romantic love of my life and man I have been married with and gone through our fair share of "stuffs" together for 17 years is definitely my Husband, Michael. We both still remember the day we met in person, vividly, and the next few years of random encounters (some, not so random) that we'd have before we finally tied the proverbial knot. It was not only unexpected, but just worked - though we've worked hard to keep it together. Make no mistake... from those first romantic glimmers of "magical love" from teenage hearts, there's a mature price people who truly want love pay in order to make things work despite a world that de-values the love it sells. Not to mention the internal thoughts and ideas of our own Personal Supreme Court Justice Leagues which are imaginarily judging everything from the things we say to the way we look. However, having Michael in my life has been the anchor I needed to help me get out of my own head long enough to continue to heal past all the self-harm.

I think? Simplifying love to "three simple things" is about as idiotic as simplifying weight loss down to pills and surgery. There's a maturity rather than a magic to this thing called love. You have to work hard to create and foster those deeply loving relationships if you want them hard enough. My romantic love is Michael, but I have so many people in my life right now who I have known, some since we were kids, and some only for a little while, who are deeply important to me in terms of our friendship and what we provide for each other. In fact, some of them are even closer than my own bio family. I love them like brothers and sisters, whether they are blood relatives, or not.

You see, sometimes we're so damaged inside that we don't believe we're worthy of that "third love"...  whether it's our first, second, third, or even 50th love... it doesn't matter. What's important isn't the external, but the internal realization that we're worthy of love and that others are equally worthy of being loved by us. The real work is the work to find the real you and to love that person, first, so you can be emotionally available to love others who want to love you back (in the RIGHT way!).

It's not about what others do for or "to" you, but how you use your experiences to grow from the inside out. allowing others to shape your life is like allowing that imaginary tribunal of judges to tell you how worthy you are as a human being. YOU are in charge of who you are and that is the only determination of what, who, and how you love yourself, and others.

In the words of RuPaul... "If you don't love yourself, how the hell are you gonna love somebody else?"

<3 ~ Jonni Khat

Here is a link to the recent article: https://kiddy.org.uk/we-only-fall-in-love-with-3-people-in-our-lifetime-each-one-for-a-specific-reason/

Monday, July 9, 2018

Don't Ask for Permission: An Open Letter to Judgment

Since ancient times, people have created a mythos out of big, thinky concepts like jealousy, lust, greed, and even love. In modern times, we still live our lives around these ideas - and even though we're writing on computers, driving around in cars and planes, and (most of us) know the world is round and that a greater Universe exists outside our own little spheres of being - we still hold certain "truths" about a small world of internal judgment to be truthier than the big, wide reality.

The "truths" we tell ourselves sometimes involve what I think of as an imaginary personal judiciary. I like to think of them as a group of old-ish people in black robes with clip boards and microphones we pick (in our mind, anyway) and allow to be our own personal jury and judge on everything from our hair cuts to our ability to perform our jobs. We invite them in to inspect how well we make our beds, how we pluck our eyebrows, and how neatly we fold our towels.

What we don't want them to find is what we stuff under the bed, the thoughts going on behind the brows, or what we hid behind the towels in the closet.

Why do we do this? Well, there are a host of psychological, philosophical, and epistemological reasons - from trauma and guilt, to suffering or enlightenment, to the very existence of humanity - we tell each other, and ourselves, that we're not enough on a second by second basis. Yet, does it really matter why?

I think? The most important part of mythos is that we are trying to create some sort of concrete justification, or judgment, of things that we do, think, or are... rather than just BEING. The worst part? We assign the judgy part to some imaginary group of folks who are a mismatch of people in our lives, both real and imaginary, that we believe have some sort of authority to make us feel, think, and do things with ourselves and our lives: The Supreme Courts of Personal Judgment.

So, I am going to task you all with something, and I am going to do it as well. I want for us to write a letter to our own personal judiciaries, and I want you to share it with me here - or on Facebook (www.facebook.com/jonnikhatsantschi), so we can openly dismiss our courts and allow ourselves to become the independent and free acting people that we can be!

(I'll post my own letter, and the follow up, on Facebook.)

<3, Jonni Khat