By Lyndol Descant
For me, crushes have turned out to be like a mind-trap or the ultimate carrot-and-stick scenario, ever dangling just out of reach but there to see; to entice.
Let me explain.
In the past my crushes have gotten me out of bed in the morning; the excitement, the thrill, the belief, or maybe it was hope, that he would eventually realize how wonderful I am and see that I deserve his love. And when he does, I will know for sure too. I will know with certainty that I too deserve good things.
But that never happened. It couldn’t. It can’t.
Romantic relationships are never as clean and easy as they are in our imaginations which, incidentally, don’t tend to indulge the realities of life; the complicated, messy, fleshed-out-by-difference-of-opinion and diversity-of-interest, realities of life.
Once I had a year-long crush on a peer who, one day, approached me, suggesting that we get coffee. What did I do? I ran in the opposite direction (literally and figuratively), yelling “thanks anyway”… over my shoulder.
At the time I couldn’t understand why I did that; why my reaction was to run from what I thought I wanted. I didn’t see then what I see now…that is, I didn’t really want it, any of it.
It sounds a bit like self-inflicted torture. Sabotage, even. So, why?
The notion of romantic love, the very stuff of crushes, is appealing. Moving beyond it is easier said than done because it can be a source of comfort in the midst of everyday life which can be as humdrum and harsh as it is dulcet and forgiving. It doesn’t help that our whole way of life is punctuated by the message to keep moving, working; aiming for ‘something out there’ that only introspection and renovation can procure. Personal worth and value are seemingly confirmed by the advent of success and nothing spells success nowadays like a perfect partnership (and a few other things too). This message is above us, below us and all around us. We absorb it, naturally, which naturally leads to us thinking that ‘something out there’ will make us feel better, happier or complete. But, often when we achieve what we think we want we realize that it hasn’t necessarily made us feel better, happier or complete.
I’ve learned that expecting a person, place or thing to provide me with what I think I’ve been missing is a dangerous often disappointing path the tread. It’s that carrot-and-stick-mind-trap! Once I figured out how it worked I thought it better to keep my distance, forego reality for fantasy. But I still neglected to stop or even slow down and be present, at least at first. When I finally did stop I found the courage and spirit to look at myself, and it was difficult, because it took work. Looking outside of myself for love and validation became a habit like any other because loving and validating myself never seemed like enough. But it’s enough. There’s magic in loving oneself. In-fact, I think it’s a very good place to live, a much less dangerous path to tread as I forge all sorts of meaningful relationships including, someday, a romantic one with a person who might, if needed, remind me not to escape but embrace myself.
So, the song and likewise the video are a bit of a spoof; an opportunity for me to make fun of me as a real life grown-up (reformed) serial crusher. It was my intention to use laughter, absurdity and a bit of satire to illustrate the time I spent moving from one crush to the next desiring, yearning for something that I never intended to let myself have AND to represent the end to this obsession; death to my dangling carrot disorder and the dismantling of my mind-trap.
Lyndol Descant is a Brooklyn-based painter, illustrator, photographer, composer, music teacher and singer-song writer. Yes, she sure does a lot. You can have a look at some of her other projects at lyndol.com.