Friday, February 14, 2014

And I thought that love was a stranger in an open car to tempt me in and drive me far away

So you know I spent all those years being all, "I'm going to die alooooooooone! I won't even be a cat lady because I'm allergic and I hate them and so I'll be alone alone alone and then I will die. Alone!"

And since my therapist paid friend had been trained not to roll her eyes even when she heard this for the thousandth time, she did not. She just very calmly pointed out that I was not, in fact, alone in the world. I had many people I loved and who loved me.

And I, having not been raised in a barn, did not roll my eyes back at her.

I just went home and sobbed because she was so totally wrong. I just needed The One or The One of 26 to come along and make my world sparkly happy. Someone would love me so much and we would live happily ever after.

Or something like that.


My coupled friends - the ones who weren't suggesting that perhaps my standards were too high - would tell me that I would meet the person. Particularly when I wasn't looking. So I should stop looking so hard.

To which I probably did roll my eyes, and mutter in my head, "Easy for you to fucking say. You're not alone."

Now I have been married for over five years, and I feel very certain in my place in a loved and loving family. And I am almost never alone. In fact, I long to be alone sometimes.
And what I've learned about love is not new in the world, but it was certainly new to me.

Sparkly love is so exciting. Long-term love is not.

There may be couples who keep it spicy even after all those years, but we are not among them. Monogamy is tedious. Having kids adds a layer of joy and sucks out five layers of romance. There have been about 87 katrillion articles written on this. This isn't news to anyone.

Marital love, and love of your kids is so solid you can practically take a bite and chew it. It's like hearty stew, thick nurturing soup, Minnesota hot dish.

It's not exotic. It's not spicy. It's not surprising. Sometimes it's very sweet, and it's often tender, but substantial. Always substantial.

This is not the love I thought I was lacking. These were not the droids I was looking for.

The Valentine's Day we are sold is all about romance and flowers - red roses! - and frou-frou gifts and chocolate and lacy lingerie and bubbly drinks...leading, one assumes, to the S-E-X. Love! Passion!

We are inundated with red and pink hearts. I love all this shit as much as the next person, but that's not love.

Valentine's Day, when I was single, made me feel so inadequate, so unloved. I remember all those years in college, and years in my mid- and then late-30s (because I'm pretty sure I had a boyfriend of one sort or another solidly through my 20s. I made sure there were no gaps.).

I wasn't unloved. I just didn't recognize how much real love I had around me.

So I realize this is easy for me to say, because, despite the odds of a meteor hitting me being higher than me getting married at 39, and procreating after 40, I am now married with kids. And even if Nick and I ever got divorced or someone stabbed him in bed, I know that I love and am loved, and always was.

And I know that I will in fact never be alone.

(Particularly, I suppose, if I'm in prison for stabbing.) 

Big hugs and lots of love to you!


  1. I love you, dear friend! Try not to stab anyone. :)

    1. Love YOU, Jess! Big hugs! Stabbing highly unlikely. I just like to talk about it. I'd be more likely to use poising, I think.

  2. Happy Valentine's Day, foxy lady! I'm happy you have the substantial "Minnesota hot dish" married love and are a beloved Mama to those darlings who never leave you alone. You have such a huge heart, it's wonderful.

    1. Giant hugs and lots of love to you, my dear, sweet friend!

  3. Lisa, I've been reading your blog for years and got married on the exact same day as you did. I hear you. It's different than we might have thought but still very good.

    1. Oh, wow! I have friends with the same anniversary, but not the exact same day! Cool! Yes - it's great and I wouldn't trade it, but so different from my imagination.

  4. Such a lovely post... and I'm sniggering away at the last few lines. :-)

    1. :) Thank you and glad to make you laugh!

  5. Aw, thank you so much for this - heartfelt and warmly received plea to those of us who are still searching. You give me so much hope and make my heart swell:)


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