It was early morning. I heard a song from my young adulthood long ago, which caused me to relate back to a time before I knew about love (or if there was such a thing). I thought of the time before I knew what it meant to have love for someone else. And by this, I mean to feel a love love that extends further than me or my family. One that is not seemingly mandatory or conformed to a programmed life, such as the love we feel for our parent or the unconditional love they are supposed to feel towards us as their children.
I suppose I was too young to young to understand. Perhaps I was too afraid to grasp the concept of something so strong or selfless; to feel for, to live or die for, and to believe so deeply within my being that one person could mean that much to me, —to feel like I would risk it all, that I would risk anything and everything; that I would risk my blood, my life, and my limbs, and even if I lost it all the process, none of that would matter because the love in my heart had overshadowed everything else.
I was never sure if love was real or fairy-tale. I was unsure if love was something I was never brave enough to dare for. And believe me when I tell you; it is a brave emotion to care so deeply. It is humbling and leaves the heart vulnerable.
In my previous attempts at love, I am not sure that I was ever brave enough to risk it all or to put it all on the line, to leave nothing up to interpretation, or to submit so honestly with all my heart, to live for this with no excuse or exception, and to fall deeply without the need for a safety net.
I was never sure if love had a particular face or smile. I was not sure if love had a specific voice or touch. I often wondered if I would know when I saw it. Would I know this was love? Would I know what to do with it or how to nurture a feeling so daring and so inestimably huge without shying away in fear for my own protection?
What is love?
Is it just a feeling? Is it living and breathing like a life within us all, eager and yearning to live beyond our wildest dreams, or is it whisper we hear in our dreams that leads us towards hopeful fascination?
I suppose love is not specific to definition. It is an expansive term; one that is only specific to particular people, —such as the love we feel for a cousin or sibling. There is a difference between this and the love we feel for an aunt and uncle. There is also the love we feel for a friend and the love we have for a pet. There is a love for art, a love for music, a love for scenery, and a love for living.
Romantically, however, love sometimes comes with a price. We try and we try; we see where we fit and we meet people along the way. We have our first crush and out first attempt at love. Then we have the first experience with a kiss. From there, we find ourselves on a search for more because we want to feel more than just one kiss. We want more than a simple feel of our hands clasped together. We want the transcendence of touch to become the enmeshed sensation that evolves when two bodies combine into one.
Suddenly, our eyes see with a different level of intent. Our feelings confuse emotional sensation with the grand velocity of a physical eruption or climactic release. Often times, lust becomes love and the thrill of attraction somehow defines the temporary novelty of what we think love is. It is more than just the fascination of a skirt or her legs, one crossed over the other while her high-heeled shoe dangles from the tip of her toe. Love is more than her as she tempts you. It has nothing to do with perfection and more to do with unnoticeable imperfections because to you; her beauty goes beyond measure.
I suppose it went this way for me—always confused, always hoping to find my place in the circle with someone to have me as I am without regret. Suffice to say that I was young and searching and mistaken of my own identity. Perhaps I was looking in the wrong places or maybe I was unsure of what I was looking for to begin with. However, all I knew is that somehow, somewhere, I would find love one day.
Love is a facial expression. Love is a smile we cannot forget. Love is an intoxicating laugh we cannot live without and love is a passion in which even dark times have a beacon of hope. Love is enough to know there is someone in this world made specifically for me; that I am not alone nor will I ever be.
Put simply, love is this, —it’s you beneath the flicker of candlelight and me in the constant stage of astonishment that through it all, at last, I finally found you . . .