Living a love letter:
In my experience it has always been easier to write a Love Letter than to live it.
Putting down those words to a new spouse that promise to love and cherish, in sickness and in health, till death do us part. Or those special words said to a parent or sibling that say, ” I will support you no matter what because I love you.”
Writing the words “I love You” look very different when we are being asked t0 live them and not just say them.
Sitting down at my desk, looking out beyond the smudged windows into my newly planted yard I am reminded of all those sweet letters I penned to lovers long gone. Words that I was so desperate to convey that would make sure that this one would never leave me, walk away or abandon the woman I was trying so hard to become.
Clinging to these men like they were my life preservers who would keep me afloat of my strangling fears that whispered the lies of “You’re not good enough. He’s going to leave you. They all do.”
I promised myself to do whatever it took to ensure I would never be left alone and in the end, I was left alone anyway. Buying gifts to guarantee these men who would feel enough guilt to stay even when they wanted to run.
I took hostages, captives in my emotional nightmare with locks on every door and bars on every window. There was no hope for escape for those I pledged to love for I never had a clue as to what love looked like or for that matter, what it truly meant. All I knew was that at the core of my being there lived a deeply rooted monster called “Fear of abandonment” and I would do whatever was necessary to protect myself from letting anyone leave my prison.
It was not pretty and I was not brave.
It has taken years to untangle the weeds embedded in the garden of deception that I was planted in long ago. It has been many days of understanding what was a weed and what was a flower so I didn’t just dig up everything, throw it all away and start over.
There were lessons in my flower bed of life and I chose to become willing to search for the buds yet to bloom and make room for the new and fragile growth wanting to birth forth in springtime.
The journey has not been an easy one, but I have been guided by a God who loves me and wants so much more for me than my human understanding can fathom.
As I look back now I feel such a deep sense of sadness at how my pain played out with those I so wanted to care for.
Today I have lived enough life experiences to know that love is real and that showing it is far different than I was taught when I was a child.
I know that love is the only thing that will allow me to fully accept you right where you are without judgment. Love is honoring of your choices whether they include loving me in return or walking away. Love casts out all fear and makes room for trust and honesty. Love gives space to one another’s ideas and opinions with no fear of being shamed or ridiculed. Love asks me to give you respect when making decisions to care for your own personal needs whether I understand or not. Love is choosing kindness over aggression, consideration over condemnation, charity over selfishness.
Love can only begin inside when I feel cherished and cared for by more than another human being. I must feel loved by God first, and then by myself before I can give openly and genuinely to you.
Love is who I want to be and how I want to live from this day forward.