Posted on | April 13, 2015 | 2 Comments
In my very first “real” relationship, there was more drama than a daytime soap opera. We were constantly fighting over this or that, constantly breaking up and making up, constantly in that space of “affection” where it’s so tumultuous that it seems like every single emotion is amplified. I was the MOST angry, the MOST happy, the MOST depressed, the MOST ecstatic that I’ve ever been. Either/or. Never just happily content to be with and around each other.
It seems that most of my life has been an either/or… a struggle to find that highest of the highs, even when they come quickly followed by the lowest of the lows. I feel things intensely. I feel things maybe too intensely. As a result, I’ve spent most of my life believing that to be real, feelings must be intense. They must be dramatic. They must be over the top, all over the place or something is probably missing.
I’ve always believed that love must be a state of constant euphoria… the finding of a place that nestles in that lost world of feeling you had when you got your first kiss. I thought to be real, love had to be that. Always.
It’s the real damage that movies do to us, you know. We begin to believe that it isn’t love if it isn’t all the time, in your face, affection over affection over affection with a bullet point of steamy romance and can’t keep your hands off each other crazy.
But that’s not love. Not really.
Until this weekend, though, deep down I think I still believed that was love. I think somewhere in my soul I worried that when those moments faded fewer and farther between, when those movie-worthy crescendos became quiet smiles over the top of a tow-headed pre-K… it meant love was gone. So I’ve been pacing for several weeks, wondering when Banks was going to drop the hammer of his disinterest, wondering when he’d just admit that he didn’t love me, not really, not any more. I’ve been on edge, waiting to hear the inevitable news that this, too, has passed. So when he came this weekend, he knew something was off with me. Let’s face it… he’s known for some time that something was off with me.
“Spill it,” he said, watching me fidget with my unspoken fears. So I did.
And as I poured out my thoughts and feelings and fears into the waiting ear of my ever-too-patient boyfriend, he listened carefully and then softly reminded me that real love… that HIS love… will never leave. That’s the beauty of it.
He reminded me that it’s not about the bigness of feeling, but the calmness of comfort. It’s not about the aching need, but the filled void. He reminded me that this, what we have, is louder because of its softness … larger because of the sweetly small, personal spaces that it sits in… day after day, month after month, and now year after year.
There have been no disastrous fights.
There are no screaming matches.
There has been no break up, get back together, rinse and repeat.
There is just us. Together. Happy. Maybe not movie worthy… but lifetime worthy.