Isn’t it easy to prefer the snapshot-in-time we take of people? We see one side of someone’s life and assume it speaks for the whole. I’ve been guilty of this.
Sometimes when someone you love has hurt you, it’s hard to see clearly through the pain. It’s easy to cast that person in an ugly light, to only focus on their mistake, to draw broad conclusions, to withdraw love.
Real love accepts all–the good with the bad. The love that lasts a lifetime is a love that seeks to find good, to focus on the things that kindled love’s first flame. Love keeps no record of wrongs.
I’ve been going back through old pictures and journals, sussing out the reasons, events, words that drew me to the man I married. I need to remember.
We forget. We so easily forget. The daily grind of daily life aids our forgetting. Sometimes all we can see is the empty toothpaste tube, a late bill, unfinished homework, what-are-we-having-for-dinner?, why-didn’t-you?, you-always, you-never. A record of wrongs.
I can hardly remember what it felt like to be in love with him. All those years ago when all I wanted was to be with him, see him, talk to him, hold him. I’ve forgotten the yearning.
Seventeen years. They don’t make movies about the long years, do they? The movies are always about new love.
But I want old things to become new. I believe in resurrection, I believe in life after death.
I believe in relentless optimism.
There was a time when our love was very good. I loved him. I really did. And maybe I’ve simply underestimated the toll exhaustion takes on a marriage.
The more I think about it, the more I realize we’ve been exhausted for 5 years straight. One word: twins.
A couple weeks ago I had this sudden flash of memory about The Way We Were. How we’d climb up to the roof of the gym, hide behind the huge A/C units and kiss. I was only 18.
I was different person then. Does that make a difference? Or was there something real, something true at the core of our love?
I do think love can die from neglect. It can die from lies. What do we call a relentless optimist who carries around the dead thing, insisting it’s alive?
But maybe love really is crazy.
You really have to be foolish to insist on the impossible vow. The foolishness of love is unmerited forbearance, patience in the face of adversity and kindness even when wronged.
Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds or bends with the remover to remove…
Perhaps daring to keep the impossible vow is what makes us truly human. We dare to love, to live beyond impossibility, to forgive, to love and love and love again.
I want to fall in love with him again. I am falling in love with him again.
I believe all things are possible.