A Decade's Worth of Love Lessons (Aundrea Murray)


Have you ever felt like you weren't ready for something but a force kept pushing you into that direction anyway?

I tweeted that a couple of weeks ago. I didn't know what I was referring to exactly but I had a feeling. Something was changing and I couldn't put my finger on it.

I've always had attachment issues. My family knows it, my exes know it, my closest friends know it, and perhaps strangers know it when they see me in my tattered, “feel good clothes”.

Love is a difficult thing to form a healthy attachment to. I've failed at it many times before, each time feeling worse than the last. I've spent so many hours healing my heart after losing spouses, friends and jobs because I was that attached to them.

I've never had an issue with detachment though. If something isn't for me, my solution is always the same: walk away.

A conundrum, I know. I can let go of what no longer serves me but not before the treacherous process of analyzing what went wrong in the first place. You can imagine the amount of time I’ve wasted by over-thinking and stressing unnecessarily.

A mentor once told me though that in order to be successful at anything, you need to find what you're good at and what you're not good at.

I'm good at expressing love.

I’m not good at identifying love.

It took a handful of the same lessons for me to learn what my problem was. It wasn’t my attachment to love - it was my issue with realizing what love actually looks like.

It’s like trying to make a fake diamond look real.

I used to think that love looked obsessive. I thought that the more of yourself you revealed, the better you would be received.

I learned that your truth can make a lot of people uncomfortable. And when your truth looks too self-confident, too broken or simply too much to some people, their love can become less authentic.

I used to think that love sounded really loud. I thought that it needed to be shouted from the rooftops until it was ringing in your own ear.

I learned that often times the loudest love isn't really love at all. Love doesn't have a volume. It’s a vibration, a hum. It's felt even if you can't hear it.

I used to think that love felt paralyzing. I thought that it was supposed to stop you dead in your tracks before you tried walking away from it. I thought that if you tried to live without it, you'd fail.

I learned that love, genuine love, makes you feel the most free. You feel just as free to fall out of love as you do falling into it. There aren’t any boundaries or any barriers. Distance doesn’t taint it. Insecurity doesn’t weigh it down. It literally gives you wings.

I can't put a definition on love because it'll mean something different to everybody. When it’s good, you want that feeling to last forever. Sometimes you change how you walk, talk, and look because love is that inspiring. You start to forget what your life looked like before you had love that pure. You focus on how you can keep love like that alive, no matter what. I know what that’s like.

And if love turns bad, you slowly begin to reject it. Your attitude changes and your tolerance gets lower. You might feel jaded. Paranoid. Anxious. Suspicious. You’ll eventually question what love really is or what it really looks like. You lose sight of love altogether. I've been there as well.

If I could describe love however, I'd say that it's an involuntary emotion that once identified, can be distributed with ease. Love will feel like breathing. Love won't feel like you’re holding your breath for the right moment to share it.

My biggest lesson in love has been learning how to identify it, how to cultivate it and how to release it. Although I may not always be able tell a real diamond from a fake one, I'll always know how to show my appreciation, for there is a lesson in both. 


Aundrea "Aundrama" Murray uses journalism as a tool to share her message. Through written word, poetry, and photography, Aundrama shares her story on her site, aundrama.com. She believes that her past is her best material. When she's not getting lost in her art, she's probably traveling somewhere avoiding sunken places on the internet. She appreciates every like, every comment, and every "Yes sis!". Her advice: Do it. P.S - She hates bios (no, she really does). 

Honoring the collective voice of womanhood, the Lessons From Love series was created to provide a community of support for women currently in love, or healing from love. The series will use personal narratives + testimonies to empower women to make effective dating decisions and to pursue the love they rightly deserve. 

If you're interested in being a last minute contributor, submit your 700-1000 word piece to z@dearqueens.com. Please include your name, website (if applicable), and brief bio.

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