Falling

Wise men say, only fools rush in

But I can’t help, falling in love with you

That’s such a good song by Elvis Presley.

Are we foolish for falling in love with someone? What makes love foolish? Is love only a game for fools?

It’s easy to love someone. My friend K once said that I am a very easy person to love. Looking back on my life and relationship history, (sorry if I sound narcissistic here), I can see how someone could fall in love with me.

As I’ve gotten older and have experienced the hardships of life, falling in love hasn’t been easy. I’ve been more jaded and cynical about love. I can love someone I care about fairly easy but it’s a different kind of love. It’s a way for me to say “I care about you”, “I’m concerned about your wellbeing”, or “I want to know what is going on in your life”.

It’s not necessarily about romantic love and intimacy. It’s a way for me to draw closer to those I genuinely care about.

I’ve surrounded myself with an invisible wall over the last several years. My heart has been barricaded and I’ve not had a reason to take a sledgehammer to the bricks. It’s as if a cast-iron chastity cage has been erected and oxidized with no hope for rusty disintegration.

Love is a risk. I believe my walls have come down, brick by brick but the cage is still around my heart.

Am I a fool for falling? Or is it the wisest thing I could do for an amazing man who deserves my whole heart?

What Is Love? Pt. 2

My boyfriend and I had the following conversation last night:

I’ve spent most of today thinking about what love means to me. I’ve come to believe love is circular in many ways. Think about it for a moment…

A wedding band is a never ending circle demonstrating the emotional bond between two people. Love is two hearts sharing a single beat. Does your heart skip a beat when you look at your significant other? Mine does. Perhaps it’s my heartbeat syncing with his as I fall in love.

Love can be symbolized in many ways. It is often seen in the form of a heart. When love, we’re supposed to love with all our heart, right? The symbolism of the heart equating to love began in the 15th century. It’s a great way to write love. Red roses also represent love.

For me, after much thought, love is more of a demonstration rather than the verbal or written word. My boyfriend shows me his love (maybe I shouldn’t use that word just yet in regards to him yet) by doing little things for me. He holds my hand when we walk through a store or at the movies. He holds me when I need to be held, without even saying a word. He came to see me this past weekend after the horrible week I had. I didn’t ask him to but he knew I needed to feel how much he genuinely cares for me.

He’s filled my gas tank on more than one occasion. That demonstrated so much of how he feels about me. Case in point – I drove nearly everywhere and my ex never once offered to pay for gas. Not even for the 45 minute one way drive to pick up his ex-stepdaughter. Sad.

Gifts from the heart are great for birthdays, anniversaries, and Christmas but they don’t truly symbolize what love is. Material goods are not a replacement for real love.

Actions speak louder than words. The same goes for love. Anyone can say the words. They’re just words. Do they have meaning? Yes. When said at the right time and in the right context, those three little words have a powerful impact on its recipient.

Love is a very strong emotion. It is possible to love unconditionally. I mean more than just your child.

Love is the ability to give all of yourself, every fiber of your being to another person. It is the internal swelling of your heart when you look at him. It is in the way you kiss – kissing him like you miss him, even when he was simply in the next room. It’s resting your head on his shoulder and holding his hand while watching television.

It is communication. It is finding the words to lift each other up, especially during arguments. It is being supportive during hard times. It is finding the time to just be imperfect together. Nobody is perfect.

Love is a learning process.

It is the process of two hearts becoming one.

Marriage

As children, many girls fantasize about their wedding. I was not one of those girls.

My aunt and uncle celebrated their 31st anniversary today. It’s caused me to reflect on what marriage really means to me. Marriage is a committed relationship in which two people overcome challenges together, that are brought about from basic life.

Marriage isn’t something I really wanted growing up. Honestly, I want it even less as an adult. I’ve had three, tumultuous and painful marriages. The first two ended not by my choice, but the third one did. I know I hurt him pretty bad. I simply could not ignore my mental and emotional pain any longer. It wasn’t his fault. He wasn’t even why I chose to end it. He’s a good man and will always have a special place in my heart.

I just don’t think I could do another marriage. I am perfectly content being in a committed relationship, growing old with someone special, than having a piece of paper designed to tell the world that you belong to each other. It might not be ideal, but it’s where I’m at right now.

A fourth marriage terrifies the hell out of me.

I belong to God. I don’t belong to another man, whom by all standards, will fail in some aspects as he is human. God and His Son, Jesus, are the only two beings I know that are perfect.

Still, not something I wanted. Why did I get married in the first place? That’s easy.

I didn’t want to be alone.

At the same time, I had no clue what love was. I had a twisted sense of love that allowed me to victimize myself. Love in the real world wasn’t the same as the love you see displayed on TV or in movies. I believed in the idea of love. I wanted to be loved by someone other than my family. I wanted a tangible relationship with someone who would give me the Cinderella fairytale.

That’s not how marriage works. Work. That’s exactly what it takes to be married and committed for 31 years, or in the case of my grandparents, 66 years as of yesterday.

Do I want to get married again? Not any time in the distant future. I’m not settling for a man who cannot love me for me. I only want what God wants me to have as a husband. The man will have his work cut out for him, as he will have a bit to prove to me. Until then, I’m finding myself and contentment in flying solo.