I know the first time I fell in love, my head was as light as a balloon, my heart was racing like a jet plane, and I had butterflies in my stomach every time I saw him. There are many emotions you feel when you first fall in love, but don’t be fooled by the happy hormones, because like there are two sides of a coin, there are also two sides of falling in love!
According to studies, the pleasure center of the brain lights up and starts brewing the butterfly effect in our stomachs, along with light-headedness and racing heartbeats. It’s that giddy feeling of wanting to shout to the world that you’re in love. Your whole body is reacting to this emotion, and your hormones are going crazy, too!
Is your first love your soulmate or not?
Before we move on to the top 5 things you should know, let me talk a little bit about soulmates and I’ll keep this simple, so we can relate to each other. When I fell in love for the first time, everyone agreed that the guy I fell in love with wasn’t “right” for me. There are two ways of dealing with this: either you believe people, or you believe your heart and ignore the people. I chose to ignore the people and listened to my heart. Little did I know what was in store for me…
For the first few weeks, things were very exciting, I still remember him calling me and bringing over my favorite snack at odd times. We did all kinds of crazy things together. I looked forward to meeting him, speaking to him, and I’m not sure about him, but I cherished all the moments I spent with him.
A couple of months down the road, things started calming down a little, and he wasn’t as invested in making me feel special. Why? Well, young love isn’t always true love! I learned this the hard way, because just half a year later, he blew me with a “we need to talk” phone call.
I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I was delighted. After all, we were * for around 6 months. He didn’t look very delighted, and he greeted me in a rather odd way, but it didn’t matter to me. All that mattered to me then was that we were together at that time. This was my first love, I mean, what can go wrong? We love each other, we like spending time with each other, what more does a couple need?
You might be surprised that first time lovers need a lot more to keep their relationship alive. So while I sat there waiting for him to say what he wanted to say, I was already dreaming about how good my life would be if we were to get married and live together forever.
Unfortunately, a happily ever after is only 100% possible in fairy tales. In real life, you literally have to do your groundwork. After deciding the menu and all, he took my hand, I smiled. He held them tight, looking into my eyes and smiled. I was brimming with happiness and joy, my heart racing like a raged horse! Then he said, “I think it’s time we moved on…”
My mind was numb, and trust me, I cried quite a bit! But I learned a lot from him, so much that I have to thank him for the awesome life I live today. The moral of this real life story is that your first love isn’t necessarily your soulmate, sometimes, it’s just a beautiful life lesson.
Life lessons you’ll learn from your first love
Aside from the lessons I learned above, here are 5 more things you should be aware of when you first fall in love.
#1 You will start living for your love and sacrificing yourself. I had friends, those I had known since my school days, and we used to hang out quite often. But when I fell head over heels in love with someone, I realized that no one mattered more than him.
A ladies’ Saturday night quickly turned into a movie date, a lazy Sunday morning by the pool with friends turned into a brunch date in a restaurant. My friends were no longer a part of my every day or every week life, because when true love calls, everything else just vanishes. Watch out for this, as your friends might start to worry that you’re leaving them for your partner. [Read: How to know if you’re really in love with someone]
#2 True love emotions can sometimes be overwhelming and confusing. I’ve just told you my story, and from that, you’ll learn that feelings of love are overwhelming and confusing. Falling in love doesn’t literally mean that you are actually in love yet. When you’re falling in love, you feel infatuated, giddy, creative and sensational, but sometimes, these feelings can turn into obsession and co-dependency.
If you don’t control your emotions, you will feel that you can no longer live without that person, and then, instead of a healthy relationship, you become a relationship addict. Relationship addiction can be emotionally destructive, demanding and abusive. Learn to control yourself and your emotions, as not doing this may lead you to become excessively clingy.
#3 You’ll be tempted to sacrifice your passion and hobbies to be with them. You might think, “isn’t this the same as point #1?” Well, no, not really. You see, I am an exercise freak, and no matter what time of the day it is, if someone tells me to hit the gym, I would say yes almost immediately. Apart from exercising, I used to go to music classes, but everything became invisible when I felt like I was in love.
My partner would want to meet me when I’m about to hit the gym, particularly when I’m about to go for my music classes. At that time, it didn’t matter to me, because the thought of being able to spend more time with him made me jump at the call. Tempting as your partner’s call may be, you have to realize that you must find a balance between your love life and the rest of the things you have going on in your life.
#4 Unreasonable expectations are usually on the agenda. When you fall in love, you may start to expect certain things from your partner, things you’ve only seen in movies and read about in books. For the first few weeks you will enjoy expecting them, but soon this will get on your nerves. Trust me.
Since you have no prior experience of what it’s like to be in love, your point of reference would often be fiction. You start to expect your love life to play out like one of your favorite rom-coms. However, real life and reel life are completely different. You may yearn for the grand romantic gestures and the professions of undying love, but you’ll just be setting yourself up for disappointment. [Read: 12 signs that it’s true love]
#5 You will sometimes live by false hopes and unrealistic thinking. You might start to believe in concepts like being meant to be or being “destined” for each other. While this is okay to an extent, this thinking can cause you to work against the odds, even when red flags are waving in your face.
Relationships require work, that’s true. But you also have to be aware of what’s worth working for. If your partner simply doesn’t treat you right or if you’re only sticking around because you want your first love to be your last, you have to snap back to reality and think of whether or not this relationship is really worth your time.