I have a ton of cute pictures to post of my girls and our adventures, but I am mainly typing tonight about my skill with (problem with) falling in love. I have been working to gain more charity over the past couple of months and it’s been amazing.
There was a time a few years ago when my heart had been hurt and I felt looked down upon and other junk that seemed to prevent me from loving normally. At this time in my life, my heart was small and hardened and located deep inside. Now, my heart is softer. It seems like my heart is actually moving to the front of my chest and growing. I think of the animated Grinch changing his heart and it actually growing 3 times.
I’ve had some tender experiences lately. I won’t go into too much detail, but many mornings I wake with a specific person on my mind and I sense a huge amount of love. On the 4th of July I woke thinking of my sweet sister-in-law who lost her dad when it seemed he was only in the middle of his life. I hurt for her. My eyes swelled up with tears as I thought of the dear man that her kids would not know personally as their grandpa. I had experienced feelings of love for her before, but this specific morning, I literally ached for her and loved her 10 times more than I ever had. Another morning, a neighbor flashed into my mind. She’s a breast cancer survivor and I’ve been getting to know her better. This achy, full heart beat for her and what she has been through. Yet another morning, I actually hurt for the ex-wife of the man that I was dating. I knew things had become so difficult in their marriage that it must have seemed impossible to erase the hurt. While, I have been so grateful for these small experiences to help me more fully appreciate the Savior’s love, I have to be honest when I say it has interrupted my morning routine. One morning as I was feeling the love for someone, I actually was sobbing during the drive. It took me a few minutes to get control of my emotions before entering the bank. I knew my eyes were puffy and red, but I really had to get on with my day.
I am reminded of a modern day romantic comedy starring Steve Carrel in Dan in Real Life. Dan is frustrated because his 13 year old daughter, Cara, feels like she is completely in love. Her would-be boyfriend explains to Dan that “love is not a feeling, it’s an ability”.
While Dan is putting teenage Marty into a car to be taken away from Cara:
Dan: Look, I'm not your parent, but I should warn you: love is a dangerous feeling.
Marty: No sir.
Dan: Are you arguing with me?
Marty: No, I'm....It's just that...[speaks spanish]. Love is not a feeling, it's an ability.
Dan: Who told you that?
Marty: I made it up Mr. Burns.
While watching Cara weep at seeing her boyfriend banished:
Marie: It's sweet.
Dan: What's sweet? How is that sweet?
Marie: To be so certain; to feel that much love...
Dan: Love. Love isn't a feeling.
Dan: It's an ability.
Marie: Well, if that's true, you have one gifted daughter!
Cara: YOU ARE A MURDERER OF LOVE!
That evening at the talent show:
Aunt 1: Dan, what's your talent?
Dan: Murderer of Love.
The irony in the film is that Dan ends up falling in love with Marie more quickly than Cara fell for Marty.
Recently, I have dated some really good guys. It’s been an honor to get to know them and a couple of them have actually liked the dating rules that I use to keep me safe and comfortable.
I fell in love with one man and I announced on facebook that we were exclusive within a few hours of our Define the Relationship talk. I realized that I looked foolish, but I couldn’t hold back what I felt. There’s always excitement at the hope of a successful match, but this has been very different. It’s like I really care about him more than I care about myself and that really frightens me. He loves my dating rules and has been a perfect gentleman. I felt really safe physically and emotionally. After a few weeks, I’m realizing that this runaway train of connectedness and love needs to come to a full stop. Loving this man is more than interrupting my morning routine, it could really mess with this lovely life on the cobblestone path with my girls that I have been working on. ;-) So once again I step away from a relationship. Seriously though, I embrace this break from twitterpation and invite my brain cells to start functioning again. Apparently, I need to start praying for more logic now that I’m getting this “how to love” skill down. Maybe my brain will start enlarging and I can look like a conehead.