I’ve been talking a bit about what love is, and I realized it is often very hard to really know if you are in love or not. Here is my allegorical explanation to hopefully express the exact emotions that are felt while in love. It may not be complete, nor the best description, but it is all I can do with the words that are given to us.
Roland Barthes probably put it best, “To try and write love is to confront the muck of language: that region of hysteria where language is both too much and too little, excessive and impoverished.” That hysteria began with Joseph Addison’s three grand essentials to happiness in this life: something to do, something to love, and something to hope for.
My something to do began at the base of a deadly mountain, chilling in the shadow of the day, blistering with its roar, and ravage with its wispy nails cutting through your skin from the days of hardened defense. This mountain was like none other in the world, millions had attempted it throughout the history of the human race, but only few had ever reached the summit. Some have said the mountain can see within your soul, and if there is not clarity between your mind and heart, death will be your fate. With this in mind I set each foot one after another into the glossy flakes of ice beneath. Empty air slithered into my lungs and grabbed at me.
The base where I was just an hour before, turned black and appeared to disappear away. Stunned I gazed beyond the windows of my mind, a hook seemed to be deep within my heart pulling away everything I had ever felt. Hesitantly I took a few more steps. All of me felt heavy as I sank into the powder. All the white, washed over my eyes. I awoke floating away from the crater in the snow I had just left. Nothing had ever felt this way deep within, my mind was airy, but my heart was light. After that there was nothing but the mountain, and a climb to fill my heart of something greater than myself.
In the first day I had made it a minuscule way up. Loneliness set in as the first night approached. Only embers from the fire kept warmth to my body. Very little flame ever glittered away from the ashes, the source that was the mountain kept its hold upon the throat of the fire. Every story I heard was true, and the rest of this summit was only to get harder. Yearning the next morning from the dream I had while asleep in the snowy mountain, I began to furiously climb. Only briefly would I stop to catch my breathe. Unknown to me at the beginning of my journey was that this mountain was not a wild animal, or beast from mythical stories, but a lady. A lady of the greatest nature, the chilling wind was like her dark flowing hair, the snow like the softness of her skin, and the rocks like the strength she had to control you, death or life. Days and days went by, the lady of the mountain threw her fortitude at me, and my heart began to fall in love with the challenge and the grace.
A barrier of thick dark clouds still stood within my sight and the tip of the mountain. I fought with ever part of the mountain. Tears from the blinding snow would freeze on my cheek, and each crevice would daunt my hope to continue further. My heart began to fill, even with my mind more cautious than ever, protecting me from every bend in the slim curves of the woman beneath. As each day was a challenge more unlike the previous day, I soon found my something to love. Each night I held dreams of this mountain, with the tender woman beneath the raging facade. I awoke each morning with great strength throughout. My love for the mountain grew, and my mind became more at ease with the treacherous cliffs and slippery grains beneath my footwear. Weeks passed and it was as if I danced upon the curves and twists of the young lady, making my way towards the dark clouds that were chopping off the view to the peak.
Shortly afterward, I began my assent into the darkness that guarded the summit. Black waves ensued, crashing into my core. Turquoise lightning struck, and I felt I could see the eyes of the mountain, fear striking within me. All the while my mind still lay caution to my heart, of the harm that lay ahead. The peak grew in my sight, and what seemed to be the light from a burning white sun, lay just beyond the other side. Naturally, love is a most distant possibility. That held true as the peak never seemed to get closer. I tried and I fell, tumbling down tearing my skin on the exposed rock, many times I could not reach the top.
I lay one night, and again I had a dream, this dream gave the key to achieving the summit, but in the dream that key would mean the death of me. My final assent to the top would be this day. The cold of below left, and a heat and sharpness began tearing away the bonds I had on for the piercing cold. Finally, I had found what I could hope for, with my mind letting down its final defense it molded with my heart in the love for this mountain, my heart felt something great, and my mind was more clear than ever. What I could hope for was to reach the summit with a heart and mind full of love.