Heidi Isern

writer. thinker. whiskey drinker.

Hit on the Head by Love’s Boomerang

I do not need my calendar to remind me of St. Valentine’s Day. The window displays in every store downtown do it for me. Unlike many people that despise the overweight cupids and heart shaped candy boxes filled with subpar chocolates, I secretly enjoy the holiday spectacle. My eyes light up at the kitschy red wrapped gifts and the set dinner menus with dishes named “Passion Poulet” and “Cake with Cuddle Cream.” Perhaps it’s all marketing glitz, but I rather like the excuse to feel twitterpatted……even if it’s only for a day.

Before the upcoming dia del amor, girls chat about romance more than the end-of-season Jimmy Choo sale. A friend that had just moved to the city asked me for dating advice around the holiday. Although providing expertise on high heels would have been easier, I asked her what she was looking for. I expected the typical and impossible answer of ‘an Adonis like body with a Warren Buffet like bank account.’

“Love.” She said simply. “I’m the same as every girl. I just want love.”

The eager newcomer went on to describe a love without definition, expectation or the shackles of past remorse. It sounded marvelous. However, I question if that is really what every girl wants. I have spent the last year watching many girls avoid love. Many were afraid. Others didn’t seem capable of putting forth any loving effort. After all, love is a boomerang. If you want it to come your way, you must first hurl it out into the world….without any expectation of how or when it will find you. If you are into the sport, read on for a few ideas for how to improve your boomerang throw.

Allowing yourself to fall down the rabbit hole…..again:

I have heard countless stories where people self-sabotage dates they have been anticipating for weeks, too afraid of losing themselves. It is much easier to say, “I ruined it” rather than admit you fell for someone who didn’t catch you. “I am just not going to put myself out there again,” they say, unaware that “not putting yourself out there” means you risk dying alone with eight cats and a dried up vagina.

When I first explained to my new friend that many people were too scared by their past hurts to chase love, she looked at me incredulously, shocked that anyone could not overcome their ego for the sake of their heart.

“Well, when was the last time you were in love? Are you too scared?” she asked me. My memories of my last love were covered in cobwebs. But after I dusted them off, I started to remember how it tasted. I remembered the rush through my veins, the delirium of passion, and the quiet evenings of adoring companionship. It was definitely worth the risk involved to find it again. And again….if need be.

As with any good idea, our heart probably has to suffer many failures before we get it right. No one can predict why some dramatic love affairs end in despair while others go down the aisle singing “dum dum de dum,” but it’s all part of life’s journey. The boomerang could come perfectly back to your hand or hit you in the head. The most exhilarating part of falling down the rabbit hole is not knowing what to expect.

Love everyone…and make time for it!

Some people are so caught up in their own life priorities that they have no time to love anything more than their mirror. I recently overheard someone explaining the public transportation system to their parents on the phone. Rather than brave traffic to pick them up at the airport they were making them take Bart. “I just don’t have time to fetch them. I have too many important meetings.” Right. If you do not have time for your own parents, how will you have time for romance? Unless you are part of the 45 minute ‘afternoon delight’ program, you may need to reassess your priorities. Other people should be your greatest asset, not your greatest hindrance.

According to research on happiness, the happiest people (and ones with the most love in their lives) are the ones who are deeply connected to their community. As a happiness junkie, I dedicate my Monday evenings to Refugee Transitions where I teach immigrants English. To be honest, I always dread the weekly event. I detest the scramble to put together a lesson plan and the white-knuckle drive to the dodgy part of town. I am envious of my friends who are embracing happy hour or movie night while I am deep in verb conjugations. However, after two hours of teaching, I always leave ecstatic. This week my girl has learned past tense and it warms my soul to think I was part of the process. I want her to ace her next exam more than I want a date at Gary Danko. If you really want to fall in love-tutor a child.

Remember, it’s not a contest.

Sadly even some people that *claim* to be love advocates really are in it for themselves, not the other person. And last I checked, that isn’t love but neediness. These people claim all the things they would do for love, but keep an excel spreadsheet of who has done what. The constant comparison goes from daily text message counts to bedroom favors. “Well I certainly think I deserve a nice dinner after that last…… ” To them love is always getting something in return, not just giving unconditionally…and enjoying it. This certainly isn’t going to work for romance, nor friendship, nor networking.

If you think you may be prone to Excel tracking (and who isn’t on occasion), perhaps it is time to start an anonymous ‘do gooder’ campaign. Remember Pay it Forward? Or Amélie Poulain? The idea of making other people happy gave Amélie regular love butterflies. Perhaps tomorrow you can pay someone’s toll. Perhaps on V-day you can send someone anonymous flowers. Extra credit if it goes to the nursing home.

Yes, I know I sound like a love cheerleader tossing annoying red and pink pom poms. My words have more cheese than snark these days. However, I do not care. ‘Tis the season. Love is all around us, if we let it.

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“Hit on the Head by Love’s Boomerang”

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