Sunday, January 10, 2010

Conservation of Love

Day 200
Originally uploaded by xXxBrianxXx

The law of conservation of energy is an empirical law of physics. It states that the total amount of energy remains constant over time (is said to be conserved over time). A consequence of this law is that energy cannot be created nor destroyed. Any form of energy can be transformed into another form, but the total energy always remains the same.

This is something I stumbled across in my ever searching, and reading, of topics on google and wikipedia. Let's take the word energy, and replace it with love.

The law of conservation of love is an empirical law of physics. It states that the total amount of love remains constant over time (is said to be conserved over time). A consequence of this law is that love cannot be created nor destroyed. Any form of love can be transformed into another form, but the total love always remains the same.

This is where my thoughts naturally led. I have always believed that love never dies. It might get lost, as in the ending of some relationships we might say "we lost the love between us," or we might say "we gave up on love." And if this is true, then even in a bad break up, love was not destroyed. I like to think of it more in terms of young kids. They get together for a planned play date. In the course of playing, one of them makes a wrong turn, and the other packs up his/her toys and goes home. "You hurt me, so I'm taking my love back."

Now with the idea that love is never created, well, I must admit this initially rubbed me the wrong way. "What do you mean it is never created?" "Michael and I created a love that was new, a love that was unique." And, who exactly am I arguing with?

These are conversations I have with myself. I know that I wasn't Michael's first love. Michael knew that he wasn't my first love. We were both a bit long in the tooth to have found first love when we met. For me, my first love, or Romantic Love's last calling, was many years ago. When I met Michael there was really nothing that occurred in the last decade to give him reason for jealousy. Well, in my mind at least. But in his case, he had been in love, and married to another very nice guy. That relationship did cross between two recent decades. I had to understand that it isn't love that is so unique, 'love is all around us' after all. It is the choice of sharing one's love with someone that is unique. Love is something we carry around with us. For some it is carefully guarded. For others it is easily given away. I have always been more of the former. I wanted the fairy tale, True Love's Kiss, but wasn't going to easily give it away. I wanted to know that the man I gave it to was going to return it with the same passion, and commitment.

On the night I met Michael, I knew that I had found it. It is the same way I found it the first time around, 25 years prior. In a first meeting, I knew that I would give my heart and love to Michael. In those many years between Love's expression, I held my love with self-nurture and care. When I gave it to Michael, my love was the most valuable gift I had to give. When he gave me his in return, I learned that his love was also uniquely special. Which brings me to the obvious question. "Does love ever die?"

Today I can tell you this. Michael is definitely the love of my life. I love him with all my heart and soul.

Let's look at that prior sentence once more.

I love him with all my heart and soul.

That is not the original text that I wrote. After writing the original text I found myself editing out one particular word. Here is the original text.

I love him with all my heart, body and soul.

When you look at this sentence there are two words that are incongruent with my current status as a widower, 'love' and 'body.' Although Michael left this world on September 13, 2009, I still actively love him. My love for Michael has not, and will not, ever change. I will always love Michael with all my heart and soul. What has changed is that I can no longer love him with my body. In my own way of accepting his death, I can only allow myself to say that I loved him with my body. This way of thinking may not be the way other widow(er)s express themselves. It is the way I have chosen.

Love for me, my love for Michael, can never be destroyed. This knowledge gives me comfort. This knowing keeps me alive. I look forward to a time when I will be rejoined with Michael. I believe there will be a time that our souls meet up. Until that day I will actively love him, and accept his past, present and future love. Where grief comes in, is that I don't have him in body anymore.

Don't let me lead you to think that I have completely come to terms with this. I am a constant work in progress. I still allow myself to occasionally hope that this is all a crazy nightmare. I want so badly to wake up, and find that Michael has been laying beside me the whole time. But for the most part, and as I am writing this, I have come to accept that he is gone. In this way, I can no longer love him in body, and so I grieve. In time, I hope to better understand how our love is transformed.

The Conservation Love: Love can never be created or destroyed. Love is gifted, and remains.


  1. Brilliant post. It helps to work through these thoughts, doesn't it?

    I'd never thought of it in those terms, i.e heart, body and soul is now heart and soul, but it's true. So true.

    It took a while for me to realize that love doesn't leave when a person dies. I still feel the love that I have for Cliff, as well as the love that he feels for me.
    I just hope that he also feels that, I'm sure he must do, otherwise none of this makes any sense!

    Love, Boo

  2. Very interesting post. I identify with the idea that grief occupies the void left when their body is gone. Love definitely survives and stays with us, until we meet again. I look forward to being back with Austin's soul and I can imagine the "conversation" - "Can you believe it????"