isabelle thye

A Millennial’s Truth #5: Instead of love, hold space in a relationship

I swiped someone right on Tinder and went on my first Tinder date. He became my boyfriend later, and he made me believe that, maybe, ‘the one’ exists.

Being with him was so easy. The thought of him was like a beam of sunshine that warmed me from within, it made me smile.

People called it ‘being in love’; science said it is the work of dopamine in our brain.

When I came across a beautiful article about holding space, I realised that he is more than love and dopamine – he holds space for me.

Holding space means that we are willing to walk alongside another person in whatever journey they’re on without judging them, making them feel inadequate, trying to fix them, or trying to impact the outcome.

Space to love
I met him on a blind date in a coffee shop. Our conversation flowed easily, I felt as if I’ve known him for a long, long time.

I was surprised that he had such a big heart to receive everything I said without judgment and ego. In that first encounter, I told him about meditation, spirituality, and energy. I was glad I didn’t scare him away.

It wasn’t love at first sight, but deep down I knew that he was special. I could be my truest self around him. With him, falling in love was free and effortless. I knew my heart would be safe with him.

Space to be me
He runs numbers while I act on intuition. I stick my tongue out in the rain while he brings an umbrella when the sky gets cloudy.

We find a common ground where we honour differences and complement one another. I can express myself freely without worrying what to say or how I look. He sees through all external layers to understand my values, beliefs, and the essence of what makes me, ‘me’.

It is okay to talk about happiness, fear, and regrets. It is okay to sit together and do nothing. It is okay to watch a documentary on a date night.

In that space, we are present and we appreciate each other. We choose to enroll in each other’s life.

He empowers me to feel proud to be myself.

Space to fall apart
I love that I could share my worries with him. I don’t have everything figured out and he gets that. He won’t tell me what to do, but he will offer guidance when I ask for it.

He holds a space where it is safe to fall apart. There will be no shame, judgment, blame, and critics.

That gives me strength and faith to do hard things in life and in work. Because of him, uncertainties become less scary, challenges become excitement.

Space to dream and grow
When I decided that I wanted to write a book, it sounded far-fetch and unrealistic even to myself. Somehow, it was a strong intuition that I had to acknowledge.

When I told him about my vision for a book, he smiled while he listened. From his eyes, I saw blessing and encouragement. That was all I needed from him.

Instead of trying to fix my dream, he holds space for me to follow my intuition. That empowers me with the courage to get started.

Space of happiness
We were sitting together and having Masala Chai one night. I suddenly thought, ‘I feel so happy right here, right now’.

I realised that we didn’t need exquisite food, expensive wine, or exotic destination to create happiness. Happiness comes from within when we connect deeply with the right person.

When we are filled with happiness and positive energy, we have more to give, and more to hold space for other people in our life.

Cherish the person who holds space
Holding space is a commitment that transcends love or ‘feel good’ effect of dopamine. It is easy to love when life is good. When you are faced with a broken soul, it requires wisdom and courage to hold space for someone.

He holds space for me in many aspects of life so that I could be the best version of myself.

Out of billions of people in this world, he enrols in my life and walks me through whatever journey life takes us.

It is brave and beautiful.

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