It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love. Love. Love.

According to John and Paul, it’s all you need.

We go to great lengths for the things and the people we love. But I mean, if all you need to survive is love, then why not. Suddenly ‘alls fair in love and war’ seems a reasonable notion.

I find the idea of finding your ‘one true love,’ idealistic and irrational. I mean, one person out of all the people in the world? Life isn’t Cinderella, your one true love won’t find you because you have a magic slipper that only fits your foot that a kind, sparkly, and somewhat rotund woman in a blue dress gave you (but let’s not get too cynical this close to Valentine’s day.)

Looking back I think I had a limited idea of love for a lot of my life. As a kid the idea of love was always this great romantic thing. This one kind of love. I’ve found lately, I’m starting to look at love a lot differently than I used to.

I’ve had some close-but-not-that-close friends tell me they love me. A notion that was initially somewhat jarring to me. How can you love me already? Isn’t that a little strong? Surely you are fond of me and we’re close, but you love me? At the time, it felt like it was cheapening the notion of love in some way. Wasn’t love supposed to be this big grand emotion?

I’ve watched my brother fall in love quickly. When he likes something, he is all in, immediately. It is endearing, and bold, and (in my opinion) terrifying. This has been his way for as long as I can remember. Not just in the matter of ladies either, when he likes something or is interested in it, he is throwing himself into it.

I’m a slow, figure it all out first, don’t-jump-in-without-knowing kinda gal. The idea that I could love someone quickly boggles my mind. I mean, I can like you immediately, think we’re going to be great friends, get a good vibe, but to blave? so soon?

As I’ve taken time to reflect on the nearest and dearest to my heart I’ve learned that for me love is trust. There is so much comfort in finding fellow human beings that you can trust with your core being. That sounds ultra-cheese factory but when I think about the people I trust the most, these are the people I can 100% be weak, funny, and stupid in front of. If I fail, they pick me up or tell me to do better. I know that no matter what, even if they’re mad at me, they want what is best for me.

Having room to be who I am without ever fearing judgement means I never have to hide my most embarrassing thoughts, ambitions, and failures. This level of love, or trust, or whatever I’m calling it gives me the safety I need to go after whatever I want. There is such an empowering force that accompanies knowing, with everything I have, that the people who love me will stand by me through anything. This love makes me strive to be better, to grow, and in turn, to encourage them to grow and strive for whatever they can imagine for themselves.

I am so fortunate to be surrounded by many ‘true loves of my life.’ They make me better.

I hope you have a lot of true loves to share your life with too.

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