Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Truth about Love

What Is Love ? by ~PARANOIA--7 on deviantART

I have learned so much about love over the years I've been married.  I've been married only 8 years, so I'm sure there is much more to learn.  The more I learn, the less I know! :)  Socrates knew more then me.  The thing that breaks my heart is how love continually gets advertised in this world as a completely different definition then what it is.

For example, we are told love is about feeling giddy and excited.  Love is when you can't live without someone and are only happy when you are with him or her.  Love is when you are miserable without this person.  Love is the rush of seeing this person walk into the room.  Love is either there or it's not and it cannot change because it's a chemical thing.

All lies.

Love is not selfish.  It's not about me or how I feel.  Actually, love isn't a feeling at all.

Let me explain it this way (and I've heard this before so know I don't own this idea!), love is not a noun but a verb.

*For those English and Grammar junkies like me, let's break it down -if you're not a junkie, just read on- I "love" (noun) you. vs I "love" (verb) you.  What's the difference?  Think about it.

Here's a little story to illustrate.  A man walks into a priest/councilor's office and tells the councilor he doesn't love his wife.  The priest/bishop says to him, "Shame on you."  He says it again, "I don't think you understand.  I don't love her."  The priest/bishop again tells him, "Shame on you."  The man feels misunderstood and frustrated now.  "What do you mean?  It's not my fault.  It does make me sad.  I just don't love her."  Again the priest/bishop responds saying, "Shame on you.  Love is not beyond your control.  If you don't love your wife, you're not doing it right."  After a small conversation the priest/bishop told the man as he left, "Now go LOVE (verb) your wife."

Love is action.

Ever wonder why a mother loves her baby?  It's because she has sacrificed for her baby and continues to sacrifice for her baby every single day.  She puts her baby first and nurtures her baby.  This is why she loves her baby.  Unconditionally.  Because she is not thinking about herself.  She doesn't think to herself, "Oh, today my baby didn't make me happy so I must not love my baby after all."  If she did, everybody would tell her she was a selfish mother that didn't deserve her baby.

Love is not a noun as it seems to be portrayed in romantic comedies and fairytales.  It is in actuality a verb.

It's not an object.  It's not a gift you can be given when you begin a relationship, all wrapped beautifully and tied up with a bow, for you to hold and keep for yourself always.  It cannot be contained or held.  It's an action.  Loving someone is not about how you feel all the time, it's about how you act.

Love is service.
Love is sacrifice.
Love is unselfish acts.
Love is diligent commitment.
Love is pure loyalty.

Finding this new (to me!) definition of love has made me realize that I must take responsibility for the way I love my husband!  It's MY responsibility to love him.  Not his.  If I were to say I didn't love him, that's no one's fault but my own.  It takes away the blaming game.  I can no longer blame him for not making me love him.  That's my responsibility!

Loving my husband is not about what he does or does not do, but what I do.  I must actively love (verb) my husband and then that happy giddy feeling will grow inside and I will love him.  That is truth, even though it's not easy.

It would be so much easier if love was an object or noun, a gift-wrapped thing to hold and enjoy.  But it's not.  It's much more difficult and complicated, but that's what makes love so special.

*I do want to add this:
I do not claim to know what everybody's individual situation is in their own relationships.  Commitment goes both ways and divorce happens more often then anyone would ever want.  But I do believe this is one of the reasons behind it.  No matter your situation, try to be the one to actively love others.  Take responsibility for your own actions and feelings.  Let others be responsible for theirs.  

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful post! I'm so happy for you and your family, for the love[verb] you have, do, and will share with them and others. I also get frustrated when the media or others portray a selfish crush as if it was real love. We are all fascinated with the prospect of falling IN love, but oftentimes have an incorrect definition of what love IS. Thanks for the reminder! I hope someday I can discover the truth about love in my own life. :)