September 16, 2020

To Love


To love is to be vulnerable. It is to open ourselves; to expose our deepest secrets and insecurities. We shield our vulnerability for fear of judgement, but when we love, we lower the shields and offer ourselves wholly. In doing so, we flourish.

To love is to commit fully; it is to say: “I have one life to spend, and I want to spend it with you”.

To love is to build a life together. Initially, we lay down foundations. For some, this might take a little while. But at some point, the foundations are strong enough that we begin to build upwards. We build monuments to our memories and we build bridges to endless future possibilities. Maybe to marriage. Maybe, if we’re lucky, to families of our own.

To love is to be at mercy of the potential cruelty of nature - for things to be so perfectly mundane one minute, and for everything to change in the next. It is to unknowingly share one last morning; to lie with each other in bed for hours - chatting, joking, talking about silly things; oblivious to what is coming.

To love is to hold your wife as she sits scared and confused in the corner of the garden. It is to look her in the eye and tell her that things are going to be OK, even though you feel utterly helpless. It is to squeeze her and to kiss her - to find every possible way of giving her every ounce of your love.

To love is to lay your head on her pillow 14 hours later. It is to whisper every lovely thing - reminders of all of the wonderful memories; reminders of just how special she is. It is to make her last moments perfect, as you watch her fade away.

To love is to lose, and to be left with the wreckage of the life you built. To see its remnants scattered across a vast wasteland; the previously clear paths you carved, now broken and indistinguishable. To love is to wander, in the time that follows - walking from one ruined monument to another, stopping at each to acknowledge the magnificence of what once was.

To love is to sign a contract with mortality. It is to know that one day, one of you will die. And when that time comes, the other will shoulder the immense burden of the grief.

To love is to stand resolute before that inevitable end. It is to acknowledge the price you will pay, and yet, to still allow yourself to be completely vulnerable.

To love is to give everything.

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