Monday, February 13, 2012
Movie Mondays: Love Essay Inspired by The Vow (No Spoilers!)
Since I know a lot of people will be going to see The Vow for Valentine's Day tomorrow, I thought I would just share the love essay/ burst/stream of consciousness that I wrote after watching the movie yesterday. It felt good to write this and not edit it--just let it stand as is :)
What is love to me?
Love is waking up and giving each other a kiss first thing every day. Waking up and having coffee together, maybe just reading or talking a little about the upcoming day.
Throughout the day, together or apart, you check in with each other, leaving sweet messages, curious about the other person’s day, thinking about what you will do together that evening.
When you both finish your work days, you greet each other with big hugs and a kiss—a real kiss. Sometimes it will just lead to cooking dinner together and talking about your days, sometimes more. I think of Lily and Marshall from How I Met Your Mother when they used to tell each other what they had for lunch in detail. If you’re in love, you want to know those little details about someone’s day.
In the evening, you relax together, watching a movie, playing a game, going on walks, occasionally doing something out of the ordinary and new like a new restaurant, happy hour, bowling, whatever. There should be lots of foot rubs, lots of touching and affection. You sit by each other and pet each other not because you are hoping it leads to sex but because you know that it feels good to the other person and it is relaxing and comforting for both of you.
Before bed, you have a ritual that you do for one another--like making tea and rubbing lotion on their feet, or drawing figures on their back.
Weekends are for doing something new together and doing active things. Biking, hiking, tennis, running, kayaking, whatever. And maybe trying a new recipe, restaurant, game, exploring a new area—anything. Just enjoying each other’s company and life to the fullest.
Love is not wanting to waste a second doing meaningless things because life is too short. Yes, we have to work hard, but also play hard, together. Life is not about constantly trying to unwind—life should be about trying to love each other to the fullest.
Love means not raising your voice or cussing at each other, ever. Love means putting the other person first. Love means going out of your way, sometimes way out of your way, to show that other person how much they mean to you. It means sometimes becoming uncomfortable trying new things because the other person wants to. It means always being on the lookout for fun things that you can experience together.
It means putting in effort and hard work and time and energy into the relationship every single day. It means no off days. It means no slacking. Love should energize you and make you feel alive, joyful, and ready to conquer the world and make your partner proud. Love should be the juice, the fuel that makes you run, better than you have ever ran before.
Being in love should make you the best version of yourself. Being in love means constantly doing things for the other person because you know that it will never be enough, but you are going to give it your best effort anyway. Love means recognizing that the other person could die tomorrow, and you better soak that person up as much as you can and make the most out of every single day you have with them. Love means giving all of yourself, but since the other person is doing that too, you are both filled up.
Love SHOULD be like the movies and books, only better because it’s real. It’s not that we can’t live up to them; it’s that we don’t try hard enough to. Water for Elephants says, “The greatest love story ever told is your own.” That should be the truth, and we should feel like every other love story—even the ones in the movies--pales in comparison to ours because we have made ours so fantastic and amazing and full that we feel sorry for everyone else.
We look at other people’s relationships and think that we have it better than them, but the reality is, society has set such low standards for what a good relationship is. Is it Homer and Marge? Raymond and his wife? No. These are not loving relationships. Love should be all-consuming; we should lose ourselves a bit not because we are weak but because the love is so strong.
People say that something is just puppy love, but that is how adult love should still feel too. Like you can’t get enough of the person. You daydream about the person. You miss them when you aren’t together. You do romantic gestures constantly, maybe even obsessively. You make out and can’t keep your hands off each other. You feel like you are magnets with that person.
You feel so incredibly lucky to be with that person that you do everything in your power to make sure that nothing ever, ever happens to hurt that person or damage your relationship. You try to make it so strong, so powerful, so huge that nothing can bring it down, no matter what happens. You pour out so much love that the other person has not a doubt in their mind how you feel, how special they are, how lucky you feel to have them.
You leave no doubts, and you make it your #1 mission in life to help make this person as happy as you can, all day every day. You want to give this person the best life you can because you think that they are so important, so incredible, so worth it that you go to great extremes to give them the type of life you know they deserve.
They are the most important thing in your life, so fear of any kind—embarrassment, pain, hurting someone else’s feelings, ridicule, looking silly—anything is worth fighting for your love and the person that you love and never for a second letting someone else hurt them. You will do any and everything for this person without a second thought or worrying about if they will repay you equally because you feel so blessed to be with them that you feel repaid just by being with them.
Love is selfless, plain and simple. Love is the greatest gift God gives us. Love is the reason we are alive and on this planet. Love is everything, and it is our responsibility to protect it fiercely and make it grow as big and powerful and wonderful as it can be. We should never settle for enough; we should always think that what we do is never enough and could never be enough, as long as we live. We should do whatever it takes to make the other person know just how important, special, wonderful, capable, amazing, and significant they are to not only us but to the world.
Just by the sheer fact that they love us back, we should feel like the most confident, strongest, best version of ourselves, basking in their love and how special we feel because out of all of the billions of people on this planet, that other person chose YOU to spend their days and life with. Just that fact alone should make people in love feel like they can do anything, be anything, overcome anything because they have love and that person on their side. Love is a force to be reckoned with, and it should give us the power to be the best version of ourselves and become the person that we were meant to become.
Love is love is love.