So, let me tell y’all about this thing called love! It’s big. It’s scary. It’s hard. It’s exciting. It’s work. It’s fun. It’s forgiving. It’s work. It’s passionate. It’s breathtaking. It’s kind. And it’s work. Did you get that? It’s work! I think somewhere between a Disney princess story and ratchet reality TV, we’ve embraced an illusion that love is flowers, hearts, name brands, and shiny karats. But, if you’ve ever loved another human being with your whole heart, then you know it’s so much more to it than that. In no way am I suggesting that love doesn’t feel like sunshiny days. It does. And it can certainly produce those butterfly feelings. However, it’s not perfect either. And it’s what? Work!
I’m sure most of us have learned by now that humans are very special creatures. We’re beautiful, but we’re annoying. We’re kind, but we’re stubborn. We’re compromising, but we’re selfish. Basically, we’re all made up of a hell of a lot of contradictions, and that’s why loving each other is hard and somehow in an oddly glamourous way also rewarding. While I’ve yet to understand the complexity and rationale of such a formula, I know that embracing the crazy and unlovable parts of one another is what makes love worthwhile. Because there are going to come times when romance is the center of your desires for the one you love, and then also times when you want to poke your eyes out because this same person has gotten on what you thought was your last nerve! Like can someone pass me a mountain so I can stand on top of it and scream? Woosah. Yet and still you’d rather have them on the mountain next to you so you don’t have to camp out alone under the pitch-black sky.
There will also be times when your love shows up in sacrifice. You’ll watch his favorite sarcastic comedy, wake up early to iron her shirt, double back to the store because you know he ran out of something, eat enchiladas instead of pizza because she loves Mexican, or take a personal day to make him endless cups of tea until he feels better. None of this will ever be about you not being true to yourself or doing things you really don’t want to do. Let’s face it…if you didn’t want to do it, you wouldn’t. It will simply be a small gesture of adoration to say, hey, I see you and in this moment you are greater. Because when you’re comfortable in your own skin and love wholeheartedly, putting someone else before you isn’t a sign of weakness or diminishing of self – it’s a demonstration of humility.
Love is an exquisite form of actively showing, giving, and committing yourself to being the best friend, supporter, and partner you can be. It’s looking at his flaws and still saying, yup, he’s the one. It’s declaring that no matter how she sees herself today, you’ll still think she’s worth it tomorrow. It’s reveling in that state of human contradiction with someone you thought you could live without, but now recognize you’re stronger when you’re together. Love is probably going to be your toughest challenge and your best example of meaningful work. You won’t be able to sit idly by and hope it all comes together. With that posture, it won’t. There are requirements, and one of them is you. That’s part of the reason why “love” is my word of the year, because I want to give more love, receive more love, and watch love manifest into my wildest dreams. So, yes, live in the fairytale and keep chivalry alive, but when the pixie and chariot dust settles, be about the work! Only then will you benefit from love’s magic.
P.S. These words are a representation of my perspective and experiences. I am not and likely will never be a professional love doctor. I’m out here every day trying to balance love with logic and emotion with reality. #thatisall