15: Three Conversations

Our wounds are often the openings into the best and most beautiful parts of us.” —David Richo, PhD, MFT

We must fiercely resist the idea that true love must mean conflict-free love, that the course of true love is smooth. It’s not. The course of true love is rocky and bumpy at the best of times. That’s the best we can manage as the creatures we are. It’s no fault of mine or no fault of yours; it’s to do with being human. And the more generous we can be towards that flawed humanity, the better chance we’ll have of doing the true hard work of love.

Alain De Bottom
On Being with Krista Tippet

The True Hard Work of Love and Relationships

Conversation #1

Something I bought for me. C kept without a second thought.

Me: When I hold you I invariably begin to think of ©, and I feel shame all over again.

Her: You know © doesn’t think of you at all except at what she can take. You were there as supply. You were part of her Pattern. You were just one more broken knight. She could change but why? It works for her.


She saw my face, paused, and then kissed me on the forehead.

Conversation #2

“The real work of love is not in the falling, but in what comes after.” – Alain De Botton

Me: I feel stupid that I still care about ©’s well being in the face of her behavior. I just want to take a spoon and carve the hope out of my heart. I know there is no hope.

Doctor: You mean there is no hope yet.

Me: What?!

Doctor: You don’t have any idea how things will turn out. Just keep on your path. Maybe there is hope, and maybe there is not, but you are not omnipotent, omnipresent, or clairvoyant. What matters is are you a happier person when you act from a place of hopefulness or hopelessness? Which is more empowering?

Me: Hopefulness is empowering.

Doctor: Exactly. Hope doesn’t mean you and © repair to re-pair. Being hopeful means you believe in a positive outcome.

Conversation #3

On grieving.