There are only a few times in your life that you truly fall in love. You know, the completely-head-over-heels-smitten with something or someone, the kind of feelings that keep you dreaming awake at night, or a visible nervousness or anxiousness, or even a huge urge to throw up. You know that’s true love when that happens. Your stomach is essentially one big knot. You bolt out of bed in the morning because this new found love will hopefully bring opportunities, none of which can be missed. It’s the kind of feeling that causes you to say ‘my life has changed; things will never be the same.’ Ever. And when you’re feeling this way, who would ever want it to be the same?
Take for instance the last time you went shopping for new shoes or a new pair of jeans. The moment you slipped those shoes on to your feet, that feeling of complete awe and wonder, could there ever be a more perfect pair, starts to emerge. It collides with your already over stimulated temporal lobe and you decide at that moment those shoes are yours to keep, no matter the cost. Break the bank, go ahead, you’re worth it. Even more so with a great pair of jeans. When those pieces of beautifully crafted fabric slide perfectly over those curves you have forever been examining in the mirror each day and criticizing, you scream inside “OMG they fit,” you know they are the ones. THE ones that you will wear this day and every day, if you could. Could you give yourself permission? Would anyone really notice if you did? It’s totally worth the risk. For these are THE jeans that cause your latent figure to be realized. To you, and to everyone, in the world. This is love.
You also know the feeling of love the second you cradle a newborn, especially your own. If not yours, then someone close to you, your own child’s newborn, a niece or nephew, a dear friend’s baby. Your heart grows exponentially at that moment in a way that says everything you’ve loved up till that point is nothing compared to this. Your arms folded gently around this little body as if it’s made of delicate porcelain. This tiny creation that is so perfect, smells perfect, sounds perfect, feels perfect. Love and perfection are intertwined and wrapped completely around your heart and spirit. You cry you’re so happy, so filled with joy. It’s overwhelming. Baby eyes looking back up at yours, as if their eyes are searching into yours, reaching for a connection on a level you didn’t know you even had, but quickly find. Life could not reflect love more perfectly if it tried. And you know. This is love.
Those are amazing kinds of love. And there are many more that could be written about, love for bright sunny weather, for rain or snow, for the ocean, forests or mountains. Love for animals, dogs, cats, horses. Love you feel when you hear a great song, the notes causing you to float right above reality. Love you feel when you take a walk in the springtime fresh air. Or the love you feel when you eat a juicy sweet strawberry, dipped in warm chocolate, sprinkled with flakes of coconut or finely chopped nuts, or taste something that is so delicious you literally can’t stop eating it because you don’t want the feeling to end. There’s also love of the friendship kind, like a best friend you’ve had since grade school, who knows you and loves you anyway. Who is always next to you when you can’t stand alone, who reassures you that where you are at any given time is ok, and whose smile or hugs can calm your worst inner storm. That is love.
There is another kind of love that you feel when God places someone in your path so unexpectedly, that when you ask Him a thousand times is this for real, the only answer you receive is yes. Truly, yes. It’s almost like the love you think you feel when you’re a young child, as your eyes begin to notice the girl or boy sitting next to you and that inevitable crush just happens. But this time, you’re a grown up. And whether you are looking for it or not, God will surprise you with the most unimaginable love.
This happened to me, May, 2006. None of the back details are important right now, except to say that after feeling alone and emotionally disconnected for many years, it was like walking into a waterfall and getting drenched with more love than I thought possible. I knew what love was when my children were born. With the first, it was truly an awakening. With the second, it was a complete refresher. Same love all over again. And to this day, it hasn’t diminished. Never has, never will. But even that love is different than this. To really understand God’s love is to see it, feel it, experience it through another human being, one of God’s children, who is also in love with Him. It wrecks you, it rocks your world, it makes you prove over and over again to yourself that you are worthy and deserve being loved because this love is here to stay.