“I love him, I just wish he’d eat better…and exercise…” she said.
“Yeah, and I wish mine would listen to what I say and trust I know what I’m talking about.” I said, laughing.
“I just wish he’d pay attention, I mean we’ve been together for 10 years, he should just know.”
Here’s the deal, when we love someone we have to love all of them.
I know it’s so tempting to love some parts or aspects of people, to keep the stuff we like and to want to get rid of the stuff we don’t. It just doesn’t work that way.
I know how easy it is to focus on what bugs us about our partner. We all have the things that frustrate us, make us roll our eyes, sigh those heavy “you’ve GOT to be kidding me” sighs, stomp out of the room, palm to the forehead, or as I threaten my love, “smother you in your sleep”. (It’s ok, I only sound tough) we all have those, and our partners have those things for us too.
Remember, this street runs both ways. They give us grace, they forgive, they ignore and walk away, they roll their eyes and sigh those heavy sighs and then love us anyway. Because, that is love in the real world.
We have to love all of them. When we only let love sink into the spaces we like, we’re constantly falling into and out of love. It’s a rollercoaster, up and down and spinning in circles. I don’t know about you but I’m too old and too tired to do that. I witness it in others and it tires me.
“Stop chasing it and sit” I said. “It’s exhausting to run after it trying to make it only what you want, and nothing you don’t. He’s human, and so are you. Just let yourself be vulnerable enough to love all of him.”
Before I got married the second time, I decided to take my own advice. Love all of him.
So, I have learned to just love him, all of him, even the parts I don’t always like, I still love. It’s deep, it sinks in, it lets me laugh at things that he later apologizes for. It lets me realize in the moment he’s projecting (or in fear), or something that is taking him out of himself, or holding him when he doesn’t know how or what to do but thinks he needs to do something. It comes around, believe me. I take my turn in the challenge tank, and he loves me. All of me.
I love good love. The kind that sinks in and does not recede. I love how I can let myself love all of him, that he loves all of me. Love is not a rollercoaster because we’re both too old for that, honestly.
Love your person, love all of them.
Forever the journey, Anne