When I was a kid, I thought of love as a prince who comes slaying the dragon and freeing the princess who is trapped at the top of the highest tower. I thought of love as finding your one true love, having that true love’s first kiss, and living happily ever after.
If we are having coffee, perhaps I would witness your eyes rolling.
When I got broken hearted the first time, I thought of love as something that resembles a longing. What’s that word? Hope. Love is hoping that the next relationship is going to work. Love is hoping that one day he would regret on ditching me and then he would realise that it was such a big mistake and that I was the only girl for him.
He didn’t, of course, and I thought love as just that – longing, hoping for a better tomorrow.
When I got broken hearted the second time, I realised that love has many forms. You could hate and love a person at the same time. And I realised that love is much more than just silly love poems and having someone to text and call at the times that are convenient to you.
When I entered university, I realised that apart from all those romanticised love from a man to a woman, perhaps love in a family is of stronger bond. I realised that love is sticking by you no matter what, accepting you for whoever you are, never giving up on you no matter how screwed you are, and having someone to count on for 24/7.
Then, I fell in love.
Love is… happiness.
Love is wanting to make sure that he’s okay. Love is wanting to take care of him when he’s sick. Love is praying to have those sleepless nights he is having instead.
Love is giving him the last bit of the cake. It is driving thirty minutes to where you are, another thirty minutes to your place, and another thirty minutes back home. Love is all those KFC nights in front of the TV on Saturday night and still feel like having the best date ever.
Then we come to the stage where love is not all lovey dovey. Love is forgiving, and forgetting mistakes. Love is looking beyond the hurt we are having and focusing on our partner instead. Love is caring about the other party even when we are in a pretty bad shape ourselves.
Love is being selfless. It is about losing arguments, saying sorry, and compromising. Love is choosing him over and over again.
Love is staying up late to chat, even when all your eyes want to do is closing them. Love is giving another chance when you screw up, and screw up all over again. Love is never giving up on you. Love is not keeping score cards.
And as I delve deeper in a relationship, the more I find myself reminded on the definition of love which I have always dismissed.
It is the definition they forced me to remember when I was in Sunday school, yet never understood the meaning. Somehow I always thought it is overrated, that I would want some other contemporary meaning instead of this.
But the more you know about love, the more you realise that, this definition is the closest we have on understanding love.
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.”
– 1 Cor 13: 4-8
And when you have experienced love this way, life is truly heaven on earth.
Photo by Alexandra Vale