love .

We’ve all felt it. We’ve all lost it. We’ve all found it all over again. We’ve lived for it, wished for it and wished never to feel it again. Four letters. One syllable. The most important, most powerful and most life changing word in our vocabulary. The absolute best and worst of all feelings. How powerful is that?

To have loved someone is a gift. To have loved more than one someone, a treasure. It is truly understanding the sheer measure of your heart.

I find myself thinking lately about the actual “power of love”. I have thought intensely about past love, present love, love that never was…and how it shapes your very being. The very core of who you are can be directly linked back to connections of love you’ve had with a person, a moment or an experience. Love…being the ultimate experience.

I have loved fully, only 4 people in my life. One I thought to be my greatest love. One I thought to be my greatest failure. One I thought to be my “knight in shining armor”. One that was too young from the get go-mentally and emotionally. The one of those 4 who came back full circle. When we look back at our lives, at our loves, it is only then-once that love has ended-that we realize the role we played in the growth or even sometimes, in the diminishment of that individual. The greatest love-young love. Tumultuous, unhealthily passionate and selfish. The failure-marriage, infidelity and eventually discontentment. The Knight-healthy, fun, but too soon. And the young one I thought I’d change-7 years to no avail. What I learned is that I made everyone else a priority, knowing full well I could never love anyone like I loved the second. I never fully gave my whole heart to anyone after that.

It’s easy when love fails to blame the other person, rarely do we ever try to take responsibility. Rarely do we say that we were the reason it ended or failed. I was the reason in many cases. I was the one who could not be happy with one person. Who was always looking for the next best thing, not realizing there wasn’t a next best anything. Never being mindful of what I had, but always being selfish about what I needed and wanted. Its a tough pill to swallow when you realize that you claimed to be the best thing for someone else, meanwhile, you were the absolute worst and you knew it. Enabling certain behaviors, allowing yourself to lose who you truly were in an effort to make something work that was beyond futile. And then watching each of those people move forward in life so shortly after you, onto to engagement, marriage or starting families. Then sitting back and thinking, damn, I really must not have meant that much, but the thing is, they didn’t mean that much either.

Fast Forward to July 2016. On a long drive, I heard a song…one that I heard briefly a while back. I raised the volume, the song continued and I was overcome with this intense emotion, sobbing, ugly cry face and everything and thinking only of him. Number 2. The one I thought to be my greatest failure. Yet, I was just ending a relationship, “this isn’t the right time” I repeated in my head. I searched Google for the little bit of lyrics that I could make out and found the song. I hopped on YouTube, found the video and listened to it again. I cried so hard…it’s almost embarrassing to share it now. But I just knew. It was such a simple moment in my life, driving with windows down, wind blowing my hair into my face, getting stuck to the tears rolling down my cheeks. My heart was exploding with the emotions of so many years of being in love with someone I thought I’d never have the chance to be with again. I was overcome with the need to share that song with him. I was scared, worried that he was still in a relationship, but I had to do it. So…I took a deep breath, swallowed down the lump in my throat. Typed the first letter of his name in the contact field until it pre-filled his name and pasted the link. I said nothing else, but waited. My heart pounding so hard through my chest, I could hear it in my head, eyes welling up, waiting…then…I saw the text bubble. What was probably a second felt like an eternity. A million questions and scenarios running through my head about how to respond based on his response. And then the words came across the screen. Everything fell into place.

With that, the best love of my life appeared again. The absolute love of my life.  These few years later, it has taken us hell to get here. To finally apologize and mean it, to finally accept that we weren’t good people to each other at one point in our lives and to finally realize that there is no one else in the world we’re meant for. The tears, the anger, the hurt, the hate, the despair. There isn’t anyone else in the world I would rather have gone through it with. All of that brought us to where we are now. A true and real happiness. True and real love. There was never a day in my life I thought  I would have a second chance at this love. A chance to do it all over again and to do it right. And I know because he tells me, that he feels the same.

The thing about love is that it really works in strange ways. We act like we know what’s meant for us, when really it’s just a random series of choices that we make when we really aren’t ready to. We end up in meaningless relationships trying to convince ourselves that we truly care about someone we don’t. We tell people we love them when we don’t mean it because we don’t want to hurt THEM. We give up our hopes and dreams to find a commonality with someone so opposite from us. We put our values in question. We live in doubt. We give ourselves up, but then wonder why we’re not happy. If we truly meant what we said, we’d be where we were supposed to be. I have ended every relationship I had, except my marriage because somewhere deep down, I don’t even think I knew-I think my soul knew-that he was the one.

So love with your all your heart…but mean it. And don’t worry about what happens in your past loves lives. Don’t feel down when you see them moving on, remember that the only reason they are able to is because of growth. Growth that you were also a part of.

Love is on it’s way if you’re open to it and if you’re ready to be honest with it.

 

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