Zack Vayda and Deconstruction: Part 2
I've been struggling to write this next blog for a few weeks now. Deconstruction is such a dense, all-encompassing topic that it's been very easy for me to drown in the details and rabbit holes. I knew Part 2 needs to clarify what deconstruction means, but it's been difficult to discover the perfect analogy or the perfect definition. Instead, I'm going to use an example of deconstruction that I've experienced in my own life recently (an example I have a feeling a lot of us 20 something's have experienced), which will hopefully bring some clarity to this concept of deconstruction. The topic I'll focus on is Love.
I used to have a very inaccurate view on love, as I would guess most kids do. I thought love was a feeling of desperate desire to be around the other person, I thought love was all about making your heart flutter and giving your insides warm feelings, I thought love was physical, sexual and passionate, I thought there was "the One" out there for me and I just needed to find her. All in all, I thought love was easy.
When I started dating, I realized pretty quickly things weren't lining up. I'd think, "If love is physical and passionate, why do I have times where I'd rather just hang out? Is there something wrong with me?" or, "Why are we fighting, aren't we supposed to always be on the same page?" or "Something has to be wrong because there are times that I just want to be by myself." In the end, the incorrect views I learned as a kid played an integral part in some nasty breakups. When things got hard, I figured it couldn't be love. When things got hard, I figured she's not "the One." When things got hard, I got out.
The raw, painful aftermath left me with a lot of questions, and I started to wonder if those questions might be there for a reason. Maybe love isn't all about passion. Maybe it isn't supposed to be easy. Maybe my childhood views are no longer applicable.
Luckily I've had the opportunity to date again, and date someone who is significantly more emotionally wise, someone who is patient enough to let me work through these questions. And that's what I did. I spent time trying to understand what I was feeling and why, I had open lines of communication to discuss where the relationship was and where it was going, but most importantly, I tried. I'm sure this will be a surprise to you, but my original understanding of love was completely off base. Love is not all about passion, there is no "One," and most importantly, love is not easy. Love is hard. Love is work. Love is sticking it out when you truly don't want to. Love is communicating your feelings with your loved one, and when you do these things, love is a happiness infinitely more deeply rooted than any false love that entertainment suggests.
I went through the Three Stages of Deconstruction:
1. Questions - "Are my preconceptions still correct?" "Am I missing any important information?" "Do my experiences with this topic match my views?" "Was my source of learning reliable?" Without asking questions, I wouldn't have been able to become aware to my lack of understanding of love.
2. Discovery - There were books on love, conversations with more experienced people in my life, open communication in my relationship and many other methods, all essential to expand my views on love.
3. Implementation - As I learned more, I brought it into my relationship. It didn't always work the first time, and often I was left with more questions. The good news is I just repeated steps 1 and 2 until I was heading in the right direction.
Deconstructing my views on love changed my perspective on everything. My life is different because of this process, and the crazy thing is this is just one topic. What are my views on politics that need to be deconstructed? What about communication? What about occupation, or habits, or psychology, or spirituality, or other cultures, or thought processes, or life? We very quickly start to see how dense, comprehensive and essential this process is.
What is it that you have questions about? What doesn't seem right in your mind despite what others have told you? What in your life do you want to know more about? First, thank yourself for having questions, and then, start your deconstruction.