Posts Tagged ‘eric’

Three love stories.

Sunday, February 13th, 2011

#1

Sixteen, confused about love and friends and my place in this world, but hopeful. A friend asked me to play keyboard for his band.   I went to practice and he was there, with auburn hair and understated dignity and a red gold and green wristband.  Practices became long hours spent in a recording studio, late nights, too much Mexican food and my desperate need for confidence in my performance that came in the form of his humor and quiet support.

Months in, he said those words, and I said them back.  Oh, I felt them and I meant it. But almost as quickly high school ended, college began, and I changed, and my feelings with myself.  So I turned and ran into my greatest hypocrisy and darkness.  It’s because you’re not a Christian, I said on my way to that night’s biggest party.

#2

Nineteen, jaded, world-wise and lonely. I flirted with danger and flitted in and out of a glamorous abyss. Depression came upon me like a torrent.  I don’t know what to do with you, Rachel said.  He was a musician with a disarming smile, equal parts silly and serious, and he loved Jesus.  My darkness lifted; I had found a soul who cared, who was different, and my heart sang. A little longer this time, but again the falling in love proved to be somehow, exasperatingly, not enough. We were fearful in our own ways.

Where to go after this?  When love isn’t strong enough, feelings don’t last, when our own mercurial hearts can’t finish what they start?

#3

Twenty.  The next guy I date will be thirty, I told him. Because real men know what they want. He was quiet, solid and steady, and every so often smiled wide and laughed intoxicatingly.  He wasn’t thirty; he was twenty-two.  But he knew.

Don’t tell me you love me. An awkward, presumptuous request to my boyfriend of one month. Because love, I had learned, was not a word I wanted to hear — yet.  It wasn’t a word I wanted to hear until I could hold it, rely on it, savor it, and set my hope on it.

I didn’t feel my love for him immediately.  I only learned, over time, that when he said he would stay he meant it.  I tried to call his bluff. I don’t want you to have to deal with me. His response stung like peroxide on an open wound — and healed it: Why don’t you let me decide what I want to deal with? I decided that sounded like a good idea.

The glimpses I got of falling in love, however tainted, unwise, or immature, were footsteps laid for my feet to follow.  And they led directly, providentially, wonderfully, to the man who chose to love me forever.

This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. The verse printed in the front of our wedding program.  Because lasting, sacrificial love is a choice.  And how glad I am that he chose me.

[Our full love story: quite possibly coming soon.]

Love,