Often relationships are compared to a bullock cart, where both the wheels have to work together for it to move ahead. When one of the wheels is broken, the other one is under tremendous pressure, and eventually the tyres will wear out, and the cart stops working. Relationships too go through different stages before they end.

A romantic relationship is like the parts of our face. It starts with being inseparable like our lips. The lips are always together, always touching each other, always hydrating each other and playing with each other; even biting each other for fun.

However, after a certain point, the relationship becomes like a nose. There are two nostrils, but there is a barrier in-between.

They are not as needy as they were. Things have eased out, and now they can work for their other dreams in life. Consequently, they both work independently, but they are not separated yet.

Though there are two nostrils and are separated by a bridge in between, there is only one breathing pipe, the esophagus, which carries the same air that the nostrils take in or out. So, though the lovers may seem to pursue different dreams, they are united at the core, and they both long for the same thing - to be happy.

However, sometimes their dreams or their boredom or simply lack of communication begins to set them apart. If they both are willing to mend the relationship and start all over again, it survives.

Otherwise, they become like the eyes. We have two eyes, but they don't ever look at each other deliberately. If we try, they will face each other, but we will have a headache if we push too hard. So, if the relationship becomes bitter, slowly these two lovers cannot stand each other, not even their sight! As a result, they resume independent positions in their lives and focus solely on their lives.

Lovers become like the ears after the breakup. They don't want to have anything to do with each other. Like the ears, they have lots of creases outside, which are the result of worries, disappointments and hurtful words, and they are hollow inside but filled with wax, which are their memories that have slowly become bitter. They try to scoop the wax out from their ears, yet it never gets completely out.

There will still be remnants of wax, and they will have to deal with it for the rest of their lives.

After a time, they may not be bothered by the wax, but they still would have it.

Lips crack, the nose can have boogers and so can the eyes, and your ears will have the wax, but the decision is yours to make the kind of relationship you want.

A version of this article appears in the print on March 30, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.