Can you? I can’t. Love without expectations is saintly love & I’m no saint; nor intend to be one. I’m human. Love is a need. I expect. If this isn’t true love, then I’ve not been in true love because I’ve always expected & I know that the other person has expected too.
When I love someone, I look forward to certain things; a love in return to begin with. Doesn’t love start with the hope that the person loves you back; that he sees you, notices your existence, likes you just one bit at a time? Later, when you realize he loves you too, you move on to level 2 – hope he does this, hope he does that. And when that is done, a new list springs up! There really is no end to it. The question is should there be? Yes, Buddha said expectations are the cause of all suffering. But then, does that knowledge stop us? When I pray, I expect God to take care of me, be there when I’m drowning in a sea of tears, & give me strength. Even with God, the relationship is of wanting & needing, toh insaan kya cheez hai!
The problem with expectations is that it’s not always expressed. Unless you say what you want, how will you ever get it? I’m not a mind-reader! The frustration builds up because we assume he MUST know & understand us very well without a single word exchanged just because he is married to us. The truth is we’ve to tell, suggest, communicate, express, say, hint. Otherwise, he might try all he can & yet not measure up to our ‘hidden’ expectations.
As for what I expect from my man, it’s the most important thing he can give me - his TIME. I can’t live with a man who is a workaholic, spends 15 hours in office, 5 hours sleeping, 1 hour eating, 1 hour in the bathroom & 10 minutes with me. Since I’m not in a race to create any jaaydad (ancestral wealth) for my progeny, I’d rather he earns a few thousands less, than over-working (or pretending to!!) & coming home only to bathe & sleep. I don’t need him to earn for me. That I can manage very well all by myself.
I’d love it if he’d make me laugh; make me chuckle through my sometimes nonsensical fits of anger, & my crazy bouts of stupidity & silliness.
I want my man to fight with me! Sometimes! I want little tiffs to dot our journey as man & wife because they lend an intensity & hunger to the relationship like none other. The kind of fights where, one moment, you want to kill each other & the next, can’t bear to stay apart! Perfect understanding? Naah! I don’t want to end up a boring old couple who don’t speak through words but only through telepathy even if they are sitting on chairs bang opposite each other!
I also expect my man to fix the fan/car/bike/washing machine/T.V/tube light &mixer when it breaks down! Well, at least the first level repair, the diagnosis of what’s wrong with the damn machine. Arey, if it weren’t for one of these smaller mercies of life, why would I need a man in the first place? A man & his muscles have many uses!! And while he is at it, I also expect him to stop bragging that my curry turned out super because of his three second ‘tadka’ magic!