And since my
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.
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!