Growing up I bought into the Disney version of love. It was all flowers, jewellery and grand romantic gestures. It was chocolates and candlelit dinners, glittery ball gowns and roses on valentines’ day.
We’ve been having a tough time lately. There’s a whole lot of stuff going on that I can’t write about. The stress has been pretty intense. For some months the brightest spot on the horizon has been an impending visit from old friends. Friends who live on the other side of the world, who we hadn’t seen for 11 years.
That visit was last week. It lasted just 6 short, hectic days. Their girls, 2.5 and 5 years old, had never met our girls, 6 and 10. Not so much as a skype session had passed between us. Yet the moment they arrived the two families became one.
Perhaps because we have talked so fondly of them, our girls loved them before they even arrived. I suspect the same was true for them. The very day they arrived our 6 year old and their 5 year old were wrapped around each other, though they had only a handful of words in common. By the end of the week we spoke a lot more French, and their girls a lot more English, but it was not words that cemented the friendship. There were copious tears when they left.
If this is love, then love is easy
it’s the easiest thing to do
if this is love, love completes me
‘cos it feels like I’ve been missing you
a simple equation with no complications to leave you confused
if this is love, love, love, it’s the easiest thing to do.
People were surprised that we had stayed in contact for 11 years, but it never occurred to me that we could lose touch. Emails were sporadic, but they never stopped.
For 6 days our house was full and hugs were plentiful. The week left me with an overwhelming feeling of being loved, and a pretty clear idea of what love is.
Love isn’t flowers and jewellery (although I am pretty sure it is chocolate).
Love is travelling half way around the world to spend time with friends.
Love is someone who knows why you are crying even before you do.
Love is making you laugh on the darkest days.
Love is knowing that your email will always be read, your feelings understood, and your heart safely held.
Love is hugs when you need them, and drawings just for you.
Love is watching a swimming lesson or going to a concert.
Love is even a wonky but passionate icing heart on a birthday cake.
Love is revelling in someone else’s triumph, and feeling their pain.
Sometimes love is even fixing your computer.
I have so much love in my life, even though some of it is scattered all over the globe. And none of it is carrying flowers or jewellery.