What is love? Is it straight out, over the top, passionate, scream it from the treetops proclamations? Perhaps a soft touch, or gentle stare into anothers eyes? Just a phone call every now and then? No, Love is too difficult to define. There are too many variations of it to label it as this or that. There are too many subtleties and facets, to say that something is or isn’t love. Love is felt, not explained. It is when you feel something that cannot be explained, by anything other than the simple four letter word, that encompasses so many things. Love. We say it too much, and mean it too little.
And then there’s being ‘in love’, which is a whole different ball game. That is, love, this indescribable feeling, at such an intensity level, that it changes a person. It makes their priorities change and heart do back-flips.
The old cliche is wrong, it doesn’t make you blind…but it does make you forgiving. It makes your desires change, and grants you the ability to do things you never knew you could, both good and bad. It defies logic and reason. And if you are alone in it, it is the hardest kind of hard.
The places you find the different forms of love are surprising. It can come as a phone call, to make sure you are okay, a hug from a stranger, a lover with whom your soul has likely shared a past life…or in the respect of a friend.
I have a friend, who I have been close to for most of my life. He comes across as very blaze when it comes to most people. He’s introverted and quiet, but he’s passionate about things that mean anything to him. I introduced him to someone very important to me once, and he was already skeptical, but promised to stay open-minded, because he knew what it meant to me. After the event, and further down the track, he said to me in a very even serious tone “I like the guy, I really do…you said I would…but if he hurts you one more time like this, I’ll fucking kill him”. It wasn’t a real threat, it was just a statement to show how he felt. It was protective and heartfelt…and there’s love in that.
Another friend. On the outside he’s pretty easy on the eye and a little on the rough side, but I’m sure that inside, is something that would make a Miner smile. We spent some time together at one point, and along with the general conversation, he may have thrown words like ‘awesome’, ‘attractive’ and ‘beautiful’ at me. I admit I was somewhat surprised, but dismissed it quite quickly and we kept talking. We got ridiculously drunk and ended up in bed together.
At this point, you may be thinking “what’s this got to do with love, it’s sounding like bad 70’s porn music should be playing in the background?”…but no. Nothing like that happened, and that’s the point exactly.
We curled up together and went to sleep. That’s the truth.
In the morning, he said to me quite matter-of-factly “The reason I didn’t try anything, is only because I respect that you have feelings for someone else, and I knew you wouldn’t want me to. I don’t want to mess with that, we’re friends”. He was right.
And that right there. Respect, honesty…there’s love in that.
A third friend has recently lost someone very special. She is in a world of her own pain, and yet never fails to reach out a loving hand to help when I fall. She listens and talks, and makes coffee and time. She never judges, and tries to understand where I’m at (not an easy feat). There are days I’m sure that company would not be a priority, yet the door is never locked when I randomly arrive. She tells me that I have helped on days that were bleak and seemingly hopeless, just by being there, yet she doesn’t know just how much she has helped me too.
Unconditional care and acceptance…there’s love in that.
And a fourth, who has messaged me every day for the last few weeks without fail, to make sure I’m still here, because he legitimately worries that one day I won’t reply…and I won’t be here. Even though he knows I don’t tell him how I really feel when he asks, he asks anyway and says that any reply is better than no reply. He brought me Halloween vampire donuts when he ‘just happened to be around’ from over an hour away, this week.
Worry and persistence…there’s love in that.
And then there’s this guy…my fish…and he uses the word ‘love’. That sharp-edged, complex, affective word.
We fit, and it feels right. It’s the part that escapes explanation, no matter how many words you care to try and string together. He came to me a long time ago and asked me to choose him, and I did, without hesitation. He asked me not to give up, and I didn’t, not once.
We shared time, places and passions, and talked about histories, futures, faults, fears and dreams. We loved and laughed…and just…fit. He always left me wanting one more kiss, one more touch, one more word, one more of everything about him…and then one day… he just left.
And I can’t hate him, so the pain and the missing…there’s love in that too. Mine.
People say that love hurts, but it doesn’t. Love does not hurt. Love is what’s right with the world. Love is both grand and humble. Love is feeling good and fulfilled and calm. Love is knowing that wherever you are, it doesn’t matter, because if you’re with that someone…it’s where you’re meant to be.
It’s standing next to them and not feeling close enough unless you are touching their skin. It’s looking in their eyes and knowing without a doubt how you feel. It’s the smile a morning text can put on your face for the rest of the day. It’s missing them with every fibre of your soul when they are gone. It’s knowing that you will always feel that way. Love fills your cup. It’s unmistakable and undeniable.
It’s the absence of love, the people who don’t know how to love, that hurts.
Don’t get the two mixed up Kids…But always believe.