Fast Sex, Slow Love

Dr. Helen Fisher offers her scientific counsel on how to experience sustained feelings of intense romantic love. I really enjoyed listening to this episode of “Big Think” because it provides logical validation on my internal theories of enduring passion.

I have read about the three phases of love. The beginning stage is called the lust phase. Next is the attraction stage, also known as the honeymoon period. Finally, an attachment forms in the commitment phase. It is said that relationships go through an evolution from one phase to the next in sequential order. However, I believe it is possible for couples to experience all three phases simultaneously.

We have all heard the term “honeymoon phase,” and even some of my dearest friends have cautioned me that the intensity Ezra and I share would naturally slow down, or someday evaporate. As I listened to their cynical words, I knew they spoke from experience. I secretly encountered feelings of guilt because I knew that our bond was only growing stronger and deeper. I often found myself in deep reflection trying to understand our profoundly balanced relationship. I wondered how and why the pieces fit so perfectly revealing a brightness and warmth on a colorful canvas. It feels healthy, stable, and simple. Yet, so exhilarating and complex.

Our connection has been electrically intoxicating since the beginning.We have now shared our bodies for three and a half years, our hearts for almost two years, and I still feel the fantasy love. Only now, after entering the third phase of love, it is a melange of fantasy love and real love. It only gets better people. You do not have to become complacent or stagnate in the commitment stage. The rays of energy shared between you and your partner can continue to reach new depths of desire, trust, fantasy, and reality.

I wanted to share this video because I completely endorse Dr. Fisher’s simple advice on how to keep the sizzle of your relationship alive. You can still feel the erotic passion of the lust phase, the romantic passion of the attraction phase, and the security and trust of the attachment phase.

  1. Have sex regularly
  2. Do novel things together
  3. Stay in touch
  4. Express empathy
  5. Control your emotions
  6. Practice positive illusions
  7. Say nice things to each other

It really isn’t unattainable to feel your cup runneth over with love. You do not have to go overseas on a great adventure to do novel things together. Ezra and I gain so much from simple pleasures. We enjoy reading aloud to each other from our books. We enjoy cold walks around the apartment complex with his hand wrapped around mine, until I suddenly jump on his back and he playfully carries me home. We make out multiple times a day and continue to explore each other’s bodies ambitiously. I never feel like he is too distracted to share his attention, but always feel like I am his greatest distraction. We touch with our eyes and our bodies.. and the way we stare at each other is capturing. We don’t usually message each other during the day with empty words, but use our messages as an opportunity to express how much we LIKE each other.

While I was at work three days ago he sent this message:

“I love that we can live together and cook for each other. I love that we have the same desire to explore our planet. But you are magic.”

He continued, “Days when we hide away together all day are still escapes. Just like they use to be.”

I responded, “You are my poet.”

The next day I said, “I’m thinking about you baby. I can’t believe we have each other or how intense and powerful our connection remains.”

My feelings were reciprocated when he said, “I can’t believe it either baby. It’s real and honest and healthy. I wouldn’t trade us for anything.”

Then, he told me he just wanted to feel my skin against his.. and I got impatient to get home after work…

I tell him about my days at school teaching first grade and he says, “You’re such a hero love. I feel honored to call you my girlfriend.”

It may seem too good to be real, but it is real. It isn’t always so light and carefree. We are humans living in a matrix of traffic and government institutions. Our jobs and the busy-ness of current life sometimes deplete our energy. There are days when I arrive home,  I just want to wrap myself up in a blanket and close my eyes. It’s okay when things aren’t elevated and perfect. It is more important to acknowledge those moments and grow from them.

On Monday I told him, “I get tired sometimes but I am so happy to have you and see you and enjoy you.”

“I get tired too, but I am so happy to be with you babe. You bring me balance and light, and I am so grateful.”

Say nice things to each other. 

Over the weekend we went on a hike with one of Ezra’s friends, Daniel. Daniel kept a steady pace on the uphill trek to the peak of the mountain. I tried my best to keep up, but fell behind when I stopped to tie my boot. I heard Ezra call out to Daniel to slow down for a minute so I could catch up. I love that he is always cognizant of my proximity. I smiled to myself, thankful. We stayed close to each other, but also gave each other space to enjoy the quietude of the woods. Sometimes we held hands for a few steps, just because we can’t go too long without touching. Other times we communicated with a soft gaze and a simple smile.

As we continued uphill, I started to feel the weight of the winter. I could have taken a rest, but I  have pretty good endurance and wouldn’t stop unless they did. Ezra must have sensed my fatigue, because he asked Daniel if we could take a water break. I knew he did that for me. It’s like he is listening to me, even when I am not speaking.

We finally reached the destination and rested at the top to take in the view, the peacefulness, the sounds and sights of nature. The sky was gray and serene. A heavy fog covered the distant views. We shared cashews, granola, and water. We breathed in the cool clean air, happy to be in nature.

He asked Daniel to take a picture of us, and I was grateful knowing he did it for me and I didn’t have to ask.

The temperate dropped and I could see my exhales leaving my body. He walked over to me and as we silently looked into each other’s smiling eyes, he zipped my jacket up to the top. I felt so cared for and nurtured. I felt so grateful that he is constantly considering me. He’ll never know the quiet impact moments like that have on my soul.

This was just an ordinary Saturday. But it was novel.

I texted him Monday morning during a break at school. “We are a team and life is better together. I can’t even imagine ever betraying each other. People say relationships are hard, but our relationship just isn’t. I am so grateful for you and how much you care for me. I’m so lucky.”

He wrote back, “You’re more than I could have wished for in a human ally.”

We had plans to visit his family after work and I told him I couldn’t wait for him to hold my hand in the car. Every time we are in the car, grocery store, or walking on a path, he takes my hand in his. When we lie beside each other in bed, my hand rests safely in his. It never feels like a habit to me, I always feel so giddy and excited to hold hands. It’s special every time.

Tuesday morning I arrived to work at 7:25 am. I saw his name on my phone. Inside it said, “I can still taste your lips.”

I responded honestly, “The way I feel for you, and think about you is unexplainable. There is a constant sense of peace that floats around me knowing that I have you.”

Being in love is the greatest of all great experiences. There is more to a happy, healthy relationship than just loving each other.

Dr. Fisher encapsulates how to exist in all three phases of love. I believe her theory is accurate because Ezra and I do all seven things naturally and daily. Some of the suggestions are simple, some require self-work and reflection. But all are possible if you want to GROW in love instead of just staying in love.

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Endless Love

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Screen Shot 2016-02-15 at 10.04.24 PM            Five stars.

In this moving novel, Scott Spencer tells the story of David and Jade who share a love that is so intense and true, they cannot even fathom it themselves. Their electrically charged desire for each other takes them into another dimension of love that is beyond the love that most people know and understand.

Here, Spencer speaks through his character, David Axelrod as he describes being in love:

“If being in love is to be suddenly united with the most unruly, the most outrageously alive part of yourself, this state of piercing consciousness did not subside in me, as I’ve learned it does in others, after a time. If my mind could have made a sound, it would have burst a row of wineglasses. I saw coincidences everywhere; meanings darted and danced like overheated molecules. Everything was terrifyingly complex; everything was terrifyingly simple.”

From beginning to end, Spencer uses poetic metaphors that enable you to see the characters as he perhaps saw them in his imagination as he wrote. His descriptions of settings and feelings invite you deeper into the story where you can feel the passion, the pain, and the aliveness the young couple feel. Oh! How many corners of pages I folded, overwhelmed with the beauty of the words, hoping to one day return to them again.

David’s emotions provoke him to cause an accident that separates him from Jade and her family. As David lays alone in his room, separated from his soulmate, he tells of the hundred letters he never sent…

“I wrote at dawn, I wrote in the bathroom, I woke in the desolate middle of the night and wrote and wrote. I wrote poems, some copied, some composed. I made it clear to the world that what Jade and I had found in each other was more real than any other world, more real than time, more real than death, more real, even, than she and I.”

He quietly, secretly, and ambitiously develops a plan to restore the harmony they once shared, until his efforts succeed and bring him closer to the only reality he wants to call his own.

“I felt her presence drifting within me like sunlight in a dark wood and I knew that she felt my thoughts as they followed her. It was life as dream, afternoons in eternity, it was all manner of leaps of meaning, all varieties of mental magic, it was the world luminous and transparent once again—just as it was when I fell asleep in Jade’s embrace and woke with her hair on my pillow.”

Although considered a preeminent erotic love story of its time, Endless Love does not include chapter after chapter of shallow sexual encounters between the characters. You spend over two hundred pages exploring the depths of their relationship, the light, the darkness, the pleasure, and the pain. Each word, sentence, paragraph, and chapter builds up to the moment when Jade and David are finally reunited. The poetry and imagery invite you into the room where the lovers communicate with their voices, their hands, their eyes, their bodies. The climax seems never-ending as Spencer shares the most elaborate, intricate details. If I had to describe the sexual scenes with one word, I wouldn’t say penetration or ecstasy or erotic or seductive.. I would say absorption.

“I felt surrounded by a membrane of pleasure, a huge, incandescent cocoon, brilliant and opaque for the most part but diaphanous at this curve or that.  And through those patches of pleasure from which the color had somehow drained, I was intermittently aware of the shadows on the wall, the creak of the bedsprings, the peevish nuzzle of one prominent mattress button. Then, like a slowly revolving dome, the pleasure surrounded me in all of its opacity and I was lost again.”

The bond between David and Jade gives others hope for a transcendent love. Other characters in the story have their own love stories, but witnessing the alliance between David and Jade moves them to question their own romantic relationships. David and Jade’s energetic connection moves and inspires others to discover their own capacities to give and to feel love.

I am experiencing love everyday. I experience it through my relationship with Ezra. I also experience the many loves that exist in our existence through listening to and observing my friends, family, and even strangers. Although love is all around, I unfortunately do not see many people consumed in a love like David and Jade. Some people have gone and will go their entire lives never feeling or knowing a love as infinite as the characters in the story.

Humans are resilient beings and we can carry on life after love. We can find new mates when relationships end. We can develop deeper connections with ourselves and build our independence. But when there is a love as inconceivable as David and Jade’s, it is rare and unequaled. Spencer emphasizes this in the final pages, where his words are so beautiful, I held the book to my heart and wept.

“Everything is in its place. The past rests, breathing faintly in the darkness. It no longer holds me as it used to; now I must reach back to touch it. It is night and I am alone and there is still time, a moment more. I am standing on a long black stage, with a circle of light on me, which is my love for you, enduring. I have escaped— or have been expelled—from eternity and am back in time. But I step out once more to sing this aria, this confession, this testament without end. My arms open wide, not to embrace you but to embrace the world, the mystery we are caught in. There is no orchestra, no audience; it is an empty theater in the middle of the night and all the clocks in the world are ticking. And now for the last time, Jade, I don’t mind, or even ask if it is madness:                                          I see your face, I see you, you; I see you in every seat.”   -page 418

Introduction

My Eudaimonia started as an idea that generated from the simple, but complex experience of being in love.

I have always considered myself a lover of love. I enjoy experiencing it as well as witnessing it. The abstract emotion of love brings me endless curiosity. It’s personal and it’s universal. It is something I attempt to explain, yet it is unexplainable. Love is everything.

As a young girl I often read romance novels, became engrossed in the stories, and formed relationships with the characters of my imagination. Their happy endings were important to me. I dreamed of a magical romance like the fictional fantasies I read about in my favorite books.

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Here I am at 28 years old and I have become the lead character of a love story… my love story. I am the Heroine of my very own romance. In my diary I have captured moments of escaping my human form where all the noise becomes silence, and only Oneness exists. I have entered a sexual realm where the connection shared is a physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual medley.  It is as mysterious as the stars in galaxies unknown.

Experiencing a love so intense, rapturous, mystical, and elevated became a source of inspiration. Though I would not consider myself a writer, I often found myself in front of my computer, my fingers moving naturally, trying to find a way to capture the moments.. to keep them forever.

In an essay about Love, Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “It is a fact often observed, that men have written good verses under the inspiration of passion, who cannot write well under any other circumstances.”

Fueled by passion, with fever in my cheeks, and love in my heart, I sat there writing. It became a form of creative sensual expression. As I overflowed with love and with words, my journals developed a genre. It is a memoir of a sex goddess, an erotic nonfiction fantasy.

One of my favorite authors is Anais Nin. She escaped to her diary where she could confess the intimate details of her sexual journey. Though her ideas and confessions about love and sex were creative and poetic, she was faced with social restrictions. She then turned to fiction to recreate the artistic distillations of her own diary. I am inspired by Nin. I can also relate to her in the way that I too find creative expression in my diary. I however, exist in a time that erotic literature is accepted. I do not need the approval or disapproval of society.

I feel compelled to share my story with others to show that sexuality is not something to be ashamed of, but something to be embraced. Having sexual blockages can also create imbalances in many other areas of our relationships and our lives. I want to encourage readers to explore the deepest desires of your heart. I would also like to  emphasize the importance of cultivating a healthy self, in order to cultivate a healthy relationship.

It was difficult to find a word that encapsulates my moments of transcendence, ecstasy, and bliss. I discovered the name for my digital diary when I read these words in “Big Magic” by Elizabeth Gilbert:

“Sometimes it is fairy dust. It’s the feeling you get when you’ve made something wonderful or done something wonderful and when you look back at it later, all you can say is, “I don’t even know where that came from.” You can’t repeat it, you cant explain it, but it felt as if you were being guided. I only rarely experience this feeling but its the most magnificent sensation imaginable when it arrives. I don’t think there is a more perfect happiness to be found in life than this state except perhaps falling in love. In ancient greek, the word for the highest degree of human happiness is eudaimonia, which basically means well-demoned. That is nicely taken care of by some external divine creative spirit guide.”

eudaimonia defined…

-having a good attendant or indwelling spirit, lucky, happy

-a contented state of being happy and healthy and prosperous

I continued to research the term, and learned that eudaimonia is the word Aristotle used to name ultimate human happiness. It is our own inner spirit or inner dwelling that is simply and truly happy. Though my diary includes a hero character, there is more to my happiness than just him. My diary entries were usually inspired by him and often about unparalleled moments together. But there are reasons behind us that make us able to reach these dimensions through love. And that is what I hope to share. I realized that my eudaimonia is not an external person or lover….

My eudaimonia is inside me. My eudaimonia is poetry, nature, and my senses of being able to smell, taste, see, to listen and hear. To touch and feel. My eudaimonia involves my relationships. My relationship with him, with my sister and my family, with my few friends. My relationships with my students. Most of all, the relationship with myself. 

My eudaimonia includes moments of solitude, those moments of peacefulness and clarity. The moments when the world is singing and I am the only person who can hear the song. It is personal and it’s interpersonal. It’s being connected to the space around me and being connected to myself…my body, my mind, my spirit.

My Eudaimonia is a collection of words inspired by True Love. I will share the accumulation of quotes and poems that I have collected on my journey to self-love and romantic love. Since I believe happiness must first come from inside ourselves, I will share methods and insight on how I bring myself balance, health, and sexual radiance. Finally, I will also share my greatest treasure, my love story. 

My relationship with Ezra has been a fantasy, a fairytale since the beginning. Now three and a half years after exchanging our first glance at each other, we still stare at each other in awe. We still attack each other primitively, attempting to satiate our insatiable desire for each other.

Society persuades us to continue patterns. Statistics show couples reaching a state of  comfort, perhaps marrying, having children, and allowing life to repeat itself. There is a collective myth that suggests it is “normal” for the fire and flame in a relationship to dissolve. But I believe that all of Earth’s elements should exist in love, especially the fire. Do you want a love that is normal or a love that is extraordinary and boundlessly unencumbered by the conventional norms of society?

We can follow the path that has been paved for us with a map and road signs. Or, we can create our own paths. We can continue patterns that already exist, but I encourage you to create your own patterns. We can keep reading fictional tales and dreaming of fantasy. Or we can write our own stories. But in the latter, we get to be the heroine. We get to be the Beauty of a story.

Here my story unfolds.

Welcome to my digital diary.

Welcome to My Eudaimonia.

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