Saturday, 28 November

Idolatry

Each of us, one way or the other, faced love addiction. Lots of those who had such an experience are still alive. But I assume that everyone – quite often at a young age! – felt a cold and mundane closeness of the abyss to some extent.

At least you’ve read about so-called love suicides that’s it a single or double suicide overshadowed by a feeling of such great hopelessness and despair that it seems better to step into a tantalizing emptiness. Like the Lemko’s song says, “a gipsy once foretold me that I would be cheated by a dark-eyebrowed girl // the whole world would die, my early age would flow past me”…

Between the teen and adult years, I also experienced love addiction, sort of intrusive form of idolatry. Now, I understand such states of the young and those in love. An important pre-explanation to this is that the addiction appears at the background of our childhood traumas and fears. So, to a large extent, the addiction, including amorous ones, can affect 90-95% of people, or even more. (One who becomes addicted to money is not very happy in the long run since the money-lovers don’t have a valley to rest on with pleasure).

Nobody can clearly explain why we fall in love with that particular face, why we iconize those movements and gestures, why we forget everything or nearly everything previously valuable to us for the sake of those eyebrows and the form of the skull.

As for me, one of the unattainable life riddles hides behind the inability to grasp how could I live before meeting her or, many years later: how did I manage to survive after that devastating meeting? Since that happened before and after these fatal (blessed, self-destructive) meetings is always similar in general and different in details.

Being in love with my college classmate, I even didn’t notice how an energetic trap was built around me. I was in between 19 and 20. The times were also physiologically ignorant. First, with the remains of intuition, I realized that I was losing the acuteness of perception of life as if plunging in a Polissia morass where you don’t drown but can’t swim back.

Later, my sweetheart began to turn into a certain fetish. That fetish might have absorbed all my sad and ruthless emptiness. First I noticed the power uprise, a strange and vigorous joy without a drop of alcohol (drugs within the youth environment were not pervasive then).

But there was one stipulation: I had to see her, she had to be in a good mood. Because when I didn’t see her, I failed to get the life around me but dreamt about meeting her. The worst thing was when we started to argue from time to time. I didn’t know then any wise terms but these spontaneous quarrels inspired me with sheer horror, what would happen if we had broken up and… why should I have lived then…

Every now and then, different, to put in mildly, sad pictures sneaked into my head that became ritual and intrusive. Such states scared and at the same time irritated me. At the first place, there was a need in incessant meetings and when it would become possible to live together around the clock. Uh, so much idealism in youth…

When several times during our last two college years, which we spent together, I saw her off to her parents (it was several hundred kilometres away), then I stood at least 15-20 minutes until the train disappeared from the station scape. I stood there as if wanted to look through the thickness of kilometres to see my beloved, feeling the unhealthy illusion of all-mightiness mixed with the wound of abandonment.

When she returned (the time apart took from a week to month and a half when we had holidays between the 3 and 4 college years), I came to the railway station in advance, approximately an hour before train arrival.

It happened so the train was delayed. Then all this time I walked along the platform, up and down, across and along, right and left, with a grimace of heavy anxiety. Later I realized that I enjoyed these anticipations, loving it the same as my sweetheart then. But I loved my feelings, not because of surplus self-absorption.

They brought some real life, even if very complicated! They opposed some monotonous hell inside me that had nestled long before this meeting.

I wanted to defend myself with this love (do you feel what an inexact word it is in such cases?) from the idolatry that had started its destructive work. Amorous addictions resemble true love same as a bunch of fresh flowers resemble a bunch of artificial.

It’s impossible to count our quarrels and reconciliations. Mere words can describe all my swings from the highest bliss to despair. When I was in a blissful state of short-term happiness, no surrounding late Soviet insanity (it was in 1983-1984) could ruin this unshakable narcotic happiness! When I was desperate even my awesome 19-20 years weren’t an indulgence in tides of a heavy old man depression…

Everything depended on that person. Of course, we are masters in finding our own but especially someone else’s faults. But all this difficult story is not her fault. And not mine. In addition to certain peculiarities of upbringing, the psyche that is inclined or not to addictions (there may be idolatry to drugs, alcohol, gambling, etc.), there is still something… And don’t ask what happened next, how it all ended (it is better to tell in detail how things started) and whether we are talking now.

There is a mystery hidden behind our happiness or unhappiness tied up to one person only. These amorous addictions, if a person masters the courage to overcome them and to survive, signal about very important things. As far as we know, whatever doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. It becomes clear how great our attraction that emits during love addiction to infantilism is, how much of animal fear and cruelty is in us, how easily, in certain circumstances, civilized perfumes can drop off, leaving to us only a bloody beast muzzle that howls eerily, looking for a desert…

This story is not only about my, hard and first, love. This is a possible story about each of us in certain circumstances.

Stepan Protsiuk

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