When We Begin To Let Love In

by Susan Pogorzelski on December 9, 2009 · 22 comments

The end of fear is where we begin
The moment we decided to let love in…

Goo Goo Dolls, “Let Love In”

letloveinflickrjpg

So this is what healing feels like.

This emotion again bubbling up inside of me from the furthest depths of my heart, this emotion that I haven’t been willing to acknowledge for a very long time because of fear, because of past hurts, because of self-doubt and ever-constant questioning…

I’ve sheltered my heart from any prospects of finding love, placing high expectations on myself and on others, playing the part of the great pretender and convincing myself that I wasn’t worthy of such a strong emotion from another person because I was afraid, because I thought I wasn’t ready, because I thought I still had so far to travel on my own.

I’ve been independent of a relationship for so long and had become so convinced of this self-reliance that I began to believe I didn’t need or even want anyone to disrupt that. After all, I conquered the world — or at least a very small corner of it, found a source of light in some of my darkest moments, walked that long road to discovering myself all on my own.

Except, I wasn’t alone then. Not even at all. When light was shed on those darker corners of life, when tears of sorrow and joy were spilled, when I began to feel more confident in who I am and what lies within my heart, they were there — family, friends, and even this community.

Being independent doesn’t mean being alone, not when you have so much you want to share, not when your heart is fueled with such love and passion, not when you have a sudden realization that you want to be that someone to someone else. Especially not when you begin to understand that these desires transcend even yourself.

For these past two years and longer, I’ve been so consumed with my own self-discovery, trying to figure out who I am, trying to figure out my purpose, trying to figure out how to love myself again. And yet, suddenly, something is awakening inside of me; suddenly I feel a little bit of light peaking through that thick, guarded wall I’d shut myself behind. Suddenly, I feel myself opening up to the prospect of love again, not so much because I want to be loved in return, but because I have so much I want to share, because I want to be for that someone what so many have been to me.

Little by little, I feel that solid structure beginning to break, as more and more I yearn to step back into the world that I’d subconsciously hid from, opening up my heart to something that has been closed off for so long.

Little by little, I’m welcoming love back in again.

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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Elisa December 10, 2009

Oh Susan, this makes me so happy. So happy for you. You deserve to have so much love in life. Because you already give so much of it. With a heart like yours it must just explode without having someone in life to share more of it with. Whoever lands you Miss Susan is going to be so lucky.

It is so scary to let love in. To open ourselves up to someone in ways we never have before. To let them see you at your best and at your worst and still love you in the morning. To want to be a better person just because that person see so much in you that you sometimes can’t even see in yourself. But it is amazing and extraordinary and a feeling that everyone deserves to experience.

(PS I am writing this comment having JUST finished watching the Fall Season finale of Glee and I have nothing but the hugest amounts of love and hope in my heart!)

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dang December 10, 2009

i just love this entry 🙂 it got me so inspired 🙂 even if i still don’t know if i’m ready for love (i am also in the stage of self-discovery still), it made me realize that i should still be open about it. i may just copy this entry and share it on my blog too (will link to your site, no plagiarism here) 🙂 of course with your permission 🙂

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Tom December 10, 2009

I agree, it is scary. You open yourself up to disappointment, heartache, and one more complication in your life.

But when it’s worth it, boy, is it worth it. 🙂

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Brianne December 10, 2009

This is a fantastic post. It has inspired me to write one of my own along a similar vein. I also watched Glee last night and that show always makes me love life and everyone in it.

I am a binge eater. When I was younger, it was easy to hide. Now that I am older and obese, it is out there for everyone to see. I have long since convinced myself that anyone who is interested in me must have something wrong with them since all I see when I look in the mirror is fat. Tack that on to the normal 20-something insecurities and soul searches and I have been on quite the emotional roller-coaster.

Your blog posts plant little seeds of hope in me. Thank you.

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Positively Present December 10, 2009

Wow… I love this one, Susan. “So this is what healing feels like…” It reminds me so much of what I wrote in my post yesterday. Waking up laughing in my sleep really made me realize that I was healing and getting better.

I love what Tom said in his comment. It’s definitely scary but it’s SO worth it!

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Susan Pogorzelski - admin December 12, 2009

Elisa: I can’t begin to tell you how much this comment means to me — it’s beautiful! And right on. Love is that something scary because it’s so unpredictable. And as a planner and someone who doesn’t anticipate change all-too well, I’ve guarded my heart against it.

“To let them see you at your best and at your worst and still love you in the morning. To want to be a better person just because that person see so much in you that you sometimes can’t even see in yourself.”

I think this is the scary part of love — the part where you have to believe in someone, believe that they love you, because you can’t quite believe it yourself. It means having faith and trust in another person and sometimes, that isn’t so easy. It means letting down your guard to let someone in and sometimes, that can mean taking a risk, taking a leap, and waiting to see where you land.

I think I’m finally ready to take that leap again. I don’t know with whom, and I don’t know when, but I hope — I know — that my heart will be open to it when the time comes. Because loving means change and change is scary, but for this, I think we should be willing to push past that fear.

And I was watching Glee too as I was searching for the perfect blog title — there’s something about music and romance and hope and that damn show that just makes you want to not stop believin’. Cue the groans… 🙂 Thanks, Elisa.

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Susan Pogorzelski - admin December 12, 2009

Dang: I’m so glad this post resonated with a lot of people — I think love might be the one thing that’s entirely worth it. The cool thing I’m beginning to realize about love — in the abstract — is that it’s all about discovery…Perhaps just in different areas. Thanks for your comment — and thanks for the links back. 🙂 Be well!

Tom: I think your comment just summed it up beautifully. And when I ever doubt myself, I’m going to come back and read this comment. Then read this comment again. Because it’s worth it. In the end, love is always worth it. Thanks 🙂

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Susan Pogorzelski - admin December 12, 2009

Brianne: First, I want to thank you for sharing a bit of yourself here and hope you know that you will always be met with friendship and understanding. I think you point at one of my own hangups, actually. When you have an insecurity, especially a physical one, you begin to question yourself and everyone around you — wondering what they could possibly see when you feel far from that perfect, when perfection is what you believe is what makes you someone worth loving.

Those kinds of insecurities are especially difficult in your twenties; you’re trying to rediscover yourself, become the best part of yourself, and so it seems to add one more thing to the list.

There’s a song lyric that goes, “it’s the heart that really matters in the end.” Huge believer of this; it’s what helps me past my own insecurities — and we all have them, every single person and if someone says otherwise, then they’re full of it — helps me to remember who I am as a person. And though I’ve taken a tumble with my own self-worth, it has helped me just begin to build that back up.

We’re all works in progress. All of us. That’s what makes these journeys what they are. I think if we begin to believe in ourselves, open ourselves up to possibilities, there will be people there to help us along. I have every belief you’ll find those people yourself, Brianne. Because I have every belief — just from your comments — that you’re the type of person who has a lot to offer, who believes in hope, and who can believe in herself too.

Wishing you the very, very best. And if you ever want to talk, I’d be more than happy to. Warmest wishes.

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Susan Pogorzelski - admin December 12, 2009

Dani: I read your post just yesterday and I love it! What I love more about it — and about social media as a whole — is that you can find so many people who are walking side by side with you, on similar journeys, sharing similar experiences so that you can learn from and grow with each other. I’m so glad to have found you and your blog, because I feel like you’re one of those people.

Here’s to waking up in tears of laughter every day 🙂

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Beth December 15, 2009

Susan. What a wonderful discovery 🙂 I think I went through a similar period in my life – of shutting people out and shutting new things out in order to preserve this need for independence and my own strength. It is definitely true that we can sometimes rely too heavily on others, and that we should really try to build strength within ourselves. But I am so glad that you feel able to put new thoughts and emotions back into your life.. and that it can come out in such beautiful prose is a true bonus 🙂

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Brianne December 22, 2009

Susan – Thank you so much for your kind words. You were spot on about insecurity multiplying within yourself until you look in the mirror and don’t even know who or what you’re looking at.

Insecurity breeds anxiety and stress and as much as I don’t like pharmaceuticals (considering I work for a contract research organization that tests these pharmaceuticals, it’s quite ironic), I am contemplating a visit to the doctor for a mild anti-anxiety medication.

I know that I have a lot to give if I could block out the background noise and focus on what is important to me, not to others. I always have hope no matter how many times it’s been ripped from me; somehow, hope is always a constant in my life.

I’ve learned a lot about myself in the last few years of my “existential dilemma”, so to speak. I am funny and inspiring, snarky and strong. But most of all, I am just me…and there’s only one of me (and only one of you, as well), so that’s pretty damned special in my book. And on days like today when I can remember that, it’s a good day. As you know, some days are better than others.

On the not-so-good days, I allow myself to wallow and cry it out because if I don’t feel it and own it, it always simmers below the surface. The more you push it away, the more it springs back at you. So on those days when all you want to do is cry and feel your pain, feel it. A good, hard cry is therapeutic and necessary to get the anxious energy out and make room for more healthy and calming things in your life.

Never be ashamed to feel your feelings and to be scared. As you said, if someone says they don’t have insecurities, they are full of it. It is also true that if someone says they’re not scared of anything, that is a lie. We all have fears and we all have insecurities. But we all have hopes and dreams too.

Today, and every day, I hope you are filled with hopes and dreams.

P.S. I would love to speak to anyone that wants to chat. I can be reached a number of ways but my online business card that lists the most popular is: http://card.ly/bevillano

-Brianne

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Susan Pogorzelski - admin January 3, 2010

Beth: Thanks so much for your comment, though I’m sorry for being a bit late in responding…It’s funny: sometimes I think about the possibility of relationships again and wonder if I’ve become so independent that I can’t learn to rely on another again. A ridiculous thought, and the answer is yes, of course, because I always think there’s a balance, but the thought is there. Actually, I think you say it best:

“…shutting people out and shutting new things out in order to preserve this need for independence and my own strength”

I think my thoughts are two-fold. While I want to be open to the idea of love, you articulated my very hesitation. I’d only just rediscovered myself, and now it will be a journey to rediscover myself with someone else. It’s exciting, though. I’m looking forward to seeing where it all leads. But I can’t help but wonder where independence ends and dependence begins. Would look forward to hearing how you did that with your husband…

Thanks for the comment and thanks, as always, for stopping by. We really should plan a time to talk sometime! 🙂

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Susan Pogorzelski - admin January 3, 2010

Brianne: I want to thank you for, and agree with, your entire comment because you just articulated my very own thoughts and beliefs so beautifully. And I hope that everyone stopping by here reads your comment, as I know I will do time and again when I need a reminder. Feel what you feel, but also have strength and have hope. Wonderfully said.

Thanks, Brianne, for being here. I do hope that people will take you up on your offer to talk; I’m looking forward to keeping in touch with you as well.

Wishing you the very best.

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