Now, despite the strong feelings I have for Mr Darcy, I am never quite sure what they are. Sometimes I look at him and it reduces me to that post. Sometimes I want to smack him. Sometimes I think that he is so different from me, it could never work, and yet this is exactly what I love about him–we are complementary. Sometimes I think it is not that I want him, but I want to be the kind of girl that a guy like him wants. The only thing I know about him is that he makes absolutely no sense to me: I can never tell if he’s serious or not, if he means what he’s saying or is messing with me, and this drives me nuts–making me sometimes want him and sometimes hate him. Is it the mystery that I want to solve, not the guy I want to be with? Etc.
In all the conversations I have with The Bride on the subject of Mr Darcy, I refer to my feelings for him as the lau feelings, right from when I first realised I was in denial of said feelings. (They are the bane of my life at the moment.) Anyway, cut to said event, where I found myself finding excuses to fondly and adoringly pat that friend, and stand close to him, and sniff him. All the body language of flirting was present and accounted for. And I found that I was feeling decidedly more warm and dewy eyed than I ever do around Mr Darcy. Which made me think that I can’t possibly be in love with Mr Darcy then, because when I’m in love, I don’t get warm melty pit of the stomach feelings for other guys.
I proudly announced this to The Bride this morning, saying that it can’t be love, it must be lau, and she promptly asked me if there was a difference between lau and love anyway? And that’s when I realised that I have a beautifully graded and (then) badly articulated theory of liking and love. It goes like this: (take me by the tongue and I’ll know you…er…sorry.)
It all begins with like. (This works for any relationship by the way; it’s my overall theory of love.) You meet someone, and you find a spark. Something about them. Sometimes it’s mental chemistry, sometimes it’s physical, sometimes it’s a joke, or a shared interest, sometimes it’s boredom–there is something. You explore it and you are surprised and happy because there is a spark. You meet again/spend more time together, and you realise it’s more than a spark; it’s a connection. Yay! The more time you spend together, the more connected you feel. Super! You find out things about them you like, and things you don’t. As time goes by, you like them more and more, and the things you don’t like fade away–they’re totally worth tolerating because they come with the good stuff.
That’s when you reach the extrapolation point. This is the point at which you realise that things are so awesome. You start to think, wow this is like fifty percent of this person and it’s such a great connection! What would it be like if it were seventy percent? Or eighty? Or even a hundred? Then you begin to extrapolate what this person is like, what you and this person together would be like, how your relationship might be. You are now officially at the lau stage. This is where you introduce the friend as soul sibling, cosmically connected, most amazing person you know, brother from another mother, etc. This is where you think, I’m falling for this person. This could actually be it. This could be the person it all works with!
Time passes. You get to know them more. You find out more and more and like what you find out less and less. The joy of the connection starts the wear off and the annoying things come back to niggle. And then you reach the tipping point. One of several things happens:
1. You realise that the person, or the relationship, doesn’t match the extrapolation, and you don’t like it. So it doesn’t turn into love, and fades back to like.
2. You realise the person matches the extrapolation, but your projection of what you wanted was not right, and you don’t want this, so it fades back to like.
3. You realise the annoying things annoy you way more than the liking, and it changes to dislike or indifference.
4. You realise that the extrapolation doesn’t match, but you like what you’re getting anyway and it turns into love.
5. You realise that the extrapolation does match, and it turns into love.
So the difference is essentially that lau is more like infatuation, and can turn into love, but not always. And once it has turned into love, it can turn back into like or even move to dislike. However, I think three things are important here:
1. The longer you are in love, the harder it is for it to switch without a catastrophic changing event (kinda like the law of conservation of momentum). Eventually you reach a place where it doesn’t matter what turns up, you love the person. The kind of love can change. With BBot, for example, it went from sexual-romantic love to platonic love, but I still love him deeply.
2. The speed of conversion is often proportional to the time knowing each other, but, especially in the like to lau to love part, the time doesn’t necessarily have any bearing of how fast the conversion occurs.
3. (This one is especially for me) Until you accept you love someone, it remains lau. So, until I consciously accept I love someone, it can’t be love as love should be, and will not be able to give me all I want from love. Even if I really love Mr Darcy, at this point it won’t have the positive effects that love would normally have on me, because I am unwilling or unable to accept it and embrace it consciously.
Phew, that turned into a bhashan!
*This is how that nickname came about:
Me: to be honest i think the most annoying and attractive thing about is that he makes absolutely no sense to me
The Bride: does he stand next to bookcases looking aloof?
Me: hhahahahaha YES!!!! thats it he has a new nickname mr darcy
TB: hehe sounds dangerous you know how my mr. darcy story ended
Me: hahahahahaha well i dont think i would object to mr darcy calling me love of his life and proposing marriage
im just saying
but thats it exactly
he infuriates me with his aloofness and his distance and his non neediness goddammit
me: and his goddamn intelligence and his ability to use it
and his bloody fucking interest in things he doesnt know
and his curiosity
and worst of all his appreciation of these things in me
the intelligence and curiosity
iiiiii got it baaaaaad