Catching feelings vs. falling in love
Today, I want to start with a new mini-series on the blog, dedicated to all the BS there is on instagram. My topic today is a stale caption you’ve very probably read on one post or another: “Catch flights, not feelings.”
Urgh! That’s goes right into the category of the dumbest things I’ve ever heard. There’s so much wrong with this statement, I don’t even know where and how to start.
First of all, I hate the expression “catch feelings”. Has anyone even said that, like…ever? Yes, there’s an entry about that expression in the Urban Dictionary, but to me, it sounds like something very stupid to say. Why not simply say “start to have feelings” or does that already sound like too much of a commitment? “Catch feelings” makes me think of the flu. Or any other illness or disease for that matter. And normally, when for example you catch a cold or a flu or whatever, you’re not really involved in the process, not intentionally. No one would ever say “It was your fault that you caught a cold”. (Of course, on one hand that’s because people are being nice and no one dares to point out that the only form of fruit you consume is fermented and that you care more about fashion than about the weather. On the other hand, if some child carrying one of those nasty children’s diseases is coughing right into your face, there’s only so much you can do to avoid getting sick.) In contrast to that, developing feelings for someone makes you an active part. It describes that you’ve been seeing this person a few times. And since it takes two to go on a date, it makes you 50% responsible for the outcome. To me, “start to/develop/have feelings for someone” sounds way more mature. It also sounds like you actually have a say of what’s going on and are not just a – well… victim – of a disease.
That brings me to the second point. Caring about others should not be compared to a disease, and also not give room to that sort of interpretation. Even though, according to Schopenhauer (and I agree) being in love may turn you into an insane person, at least temporarily, caring about others is the best quality human beings have. I’d even say it’s the only thing that makes us decent. If you take away love and empathy from this world, what’s left? I highly doubt it’d be anything worth having. Therefore feeling things and mostly feeling love is not a bad thing. It’s very much the contrary.
The third thing I hate about the phrase “Catch flights, not feelings” is the notion of running away. Only cowards run away. And yes, sure, today so many people have their jet-set life and are all around the globe all the time. Looking for easy hookups and just some fun seems to be all the rage right now. No big commitments equals no big risks. And I get it, it’s a protecting mechanism to not get hurt. But that protecting mechanism will also keep you from finding something deep and meaningful. And if you constantly reject intimacy by fear of getting hurt, you’ll probably end up and die alone, having your face eaten by your 36 cats, until the neighbors complain about a weird smell and then have your disfigured corpse revealed, instead of just gracefully lying in a coffin. Is it that what you want from life? Yeah, I didn’t think so.
So why would people run away from love? Because it’s too scary? Because a relationship is too high-maintenance? Because you have no idea what will happen next? All the possible explanations just seem so lame to me. And again, they’re the words that would rather describe a coward than a mature and respectable human being. Besides, do you know the saying that nothing worth having is easy to get? Well yes, life is pain. But sometimes, it’s worth it.
Besides, if you’re alone, your big jet-set life won’t give you anything if you don’t have someone to share it with. (Your current followers don’t count, since they won’t give a shit about your posts once your ass is flat and wrinkled.) Happiness is better when shared, otherwise it’s nothing but a fleeing moment.
So instead of running away from the possibility of love, why don’t we dive deep into it? And yes, it may be hurtful on the way, but what’s there to gain and what would life have to offer if you’re already dead inside? Also, all kinds of experiences make us grow, the good and even more the bad. And who would say no to some personal growth?
Instead of “Catch flights, not feelings.” I’d rather say “Let’s fall in love and travel the world together.” It sounds super corny I know. But that’s only because – and I’m sure of that – it’s what a majority of people would want.
Now, “falling in love” is very different from “catching feelings”, even though it may not seem like it at first glance. Both give the idea of a sudden feeling that comes over you, giving you no power at all. However, my personal connotation with “falling in love” is much more positive. It make me think of Alice in Wonderland and of Alice falling down the rabbit hole just find herself in a place full of wonders and outstanding experiences. Some of them are scary and daunting, yes, but all very exciting. Besides, she is following that rabbit, she plays an active role and lives up to it. It’s not like something just overcomes her and that’s it. She’s also taking part in what’s happening.
As for travelling the world together, I think that’s a no brainer.
And now here comes a very corny ending for this post: I hope that 2019 is the year where you do have feelings for someone. Someone you trust, who doesn’t make you feel restless but grounded, someone you would want to take anywhere with you.