Saturday, April 20

Secret #1

I don't believe in falling in love.

If you say you've fallen in love, you leave the analogy with a dark side.  Anyone who falls in, can climb out again.

When you love, you make a choice to love and when you choose not to love... well, it's just as much a choice.  This is how I explain it to myself, anyway.

When I married Josh, I wrote my own vows.  Part of my vow to him was to love him forever.  I thought about that part for a long time before I decided to include it.  How do we know what life will throw at us? How do we know if the someone we choose will always choose to choose us?  I didn't know that.  I was afraid.  The truth is that I know from experience that love isn't permanent unless we make it so.  To make that vow to him was very intentional.  I made a choice then, and I make it again over and over every day.

But here's the secret.  I used to believe that you could fall in love.  I used to believe that there was a kind of magic; a visceral recognition between two souls that reached out and clung, one to the other.  I believed.  I wanted the pounding heart and the tingles, and everything that comes with it.  All of the things that come about as a result of the newness and the hormones.  I believed in it like I believed in gravity and tectonic plates and germs.

And then I didn't.  Lots of things came in between, and they changed me.  There was a time when I became so lost that I couldn't tell you who I was or what my purpose was.  I was untethered and floating.

When I was younger and I took the Meyer's Briggs test I always came out as an INFP.  By nature they are healers, dreamers, Idealists.  Now when I take it, I always measure out as an INFJ.  Instead, I am a protector or a confidant.  I can see the change in myself.  I'm not longer so free and open.  I don't always believe the best of people anymore.  I look for the faults that I believe are there.

I am sad about this.  It doesn't change what I believe or the way that I've been changed.  I can't go back to believe that everyone is well-meaning.  I do not blindly trust, and I am more likely to find fault with someone, or expect to find fault with them.  What kind of person thinks this way?

That is my secret.  That I cannot trust blindly, but also that part of me still wants to believe in love and in the innate goodness of all people.  There are times when I catch myself wanting reckless romance in my life- not just in my marriage, but in my life- and then I realize that life doesn't really work that way.  Even if I want it to.  

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