Commitment versus destiny
Finding our other half is a myth.
And by that I mean the whole theory of finding our other halves is based on Greek mythology. Legend has it the Greek gods struggled with the terribleness of humans, who had four arms, four legs and a head with two faces. Fearing their power, the god Zeus split humans in two, creating more slaves for him and condemning the humans to spend the rest of their lives searching for their other halves. Once they found each other, they could not do anything besides stay together. Their love for each other would literally be their undoing.
Now, we prefer to forget this part of the story. We don’t like to think of love dying, or being the cause of our death. But really stop and think about it. How motivated are we to create and inspire others when we have been happy and content our entire lives? Isn’t our misery what drives us and helps us pursue our passions and dreams? How many poems were written out of bliss compared to those written in the throes of misery? And aren’t the best love songs written about love lost? (Here’s looking at you, Adele.)
All I’m saying is that while today’s culture still seems to be obsessed with finding that one special person and staying with them no matter what, I feel as if we are missing the point. We seem to think life should be about a bolt of lightning that will strike us when we meet that special someone. But the truth is, there is more than just one bolt of lightning. There is more than just one person we are emotionally compatible to spend the rest of our life with.
And if you’re already in a relationship, realize that if you weren’t with him or her, you’d probably be with somebody else. Fate is an inherently flawed notion, and to think that at the young age of 20-something you’ve found the only person on Earth specifically made for you is actually kind of laughable.
People change. We can be emotionally compatible in every way at first, then develop new friends, acquire new tastes and believe new things until we are almost unrecognizable. Do you know how that elderly couple you were admiring earlier at the park stays together? Good, old-fashioned commitment. When they agreed to marry each other, they realized their spouse would not be the same person 50 years down the road. And they decided to stay together and love each other in spite of that.
A successful relationship should not be based on whether or not you have found “the one.” A realistic, thriving relationship is built on a mutual respect and trust for each other. You understand the other person is going to differ with you and change, and you decide to love them anyways. It’s not easy — it could be the greatest challenge of your life. But that could be the whole thrill of it all.
It’s not the sort of love that slowly kills over time, such as what the Greeks encountered in their mythology. It grows and breathes and changes — it lives. It’s not about “finding” your other half; it’s about deciding that he or she will be your other half and spending the rest of your life together.