the verb & the feeling

i always thought the highest level of a relationship
based on regard for one another,
not on labels or status,
is whether or not love is ever-present.

Because after all,
one of God’s ultimate commandments
is to love one another–
He never said it would be easy.

But loving someone is a verb
its demonstrated through actions
through consistency
through words of affirmation
& always showing up.
Love is putting someone else before you,
and embodying the care & utmost respect
you could have for someone else.

Liking someone, however?
that’s a feeling.
it comes from judging a person’s character,
weighing it against your own ideals.
its demonstrated through the ease of having common ground
unsolicited friendship.
You could strive to love your neighbor,
but do you ever have to like her & her love of stray cats,
hoarding tendencies,
& late night, pot-perfumed, porch parties?

it seems to precede love–
but isnt it really its own making?

i think in most of my relationships,
i didn’t take the time to figure out whether i even liked the guy,
before committing to his lifestyle,
his dreams,
his future,
his expectations.
& because i had done all that so fluidly
so readily
i reasoned, i must’ve been in love.
because the actions of the word were all present.

Now i have a man,
who’s taken a year and a half to be mine
but i can say, honestly, i thoroughly love him.
But now that love’s been declared
& commitment’s been pronounced
i’m not so afraid of not loving him
as i am of not liking him.
because love is an action,
& i am a gold-star follow-through-er.

but will i like him while doing so?

sense-imental

do you see?

the admiration beaming from my eyes when i gaze at you?
as if even minutes apart made me thirst for you
& just seeing you in all your handsome charm quenches it.

can you feel?

me trying to pluck the stress from your temples
your neck, your shoulders
as you tell me about your eventful day?
my earnest attempt to transfer all the bad you’re feeling
& take it upon myself.

can you hear?

the sweet sound of honest to goodness happiness?
in my laugh, in the way i coo, “you’re my favorite”
for the hundredth time today.
in the sincerity in my apologies for your long hours,
back to back meetings, & difficult days.

[i’ve never apologized so much before
& rarely ever for things that have
nothing to do with me]

is this what it is to love?

it feels like
such an incredible responsibility
to feel something this insurmountable
for someone else
& having now felt it,
to know that to live any other way
would be a half-life.

the drawer

6a4bed11-e1bc-4bd7-8ee4-46a0f0e6ad5e
“its a logistical thing,” he explains.
“it just makes sense for you to have one,” he reasons.
offering a drawer
in a man’s place
is a huge thing.. at least to women. [i think]
so i ask, “but what does this really mean?”
what im really asking is, don’t let my heart & mind wander off to some hopeful cliff to later plummet off of.

“its progress.” he says, as he pulls me in close to kiss my forehead.

grey

i wish
i could be the kind of girl
just along for the ride.
revel in the silence
& await the big reveal.
& if he bows out
before it ever gets to that point in this romantic comedy?
it’s fine.
rewrite the script
cast a new leading man.
you still have a movie.

i wish i could be that girl.
more than any other self deprecating thoughts i have–
this one ranks the highest.

but because i can’t
because i’ve tried
and failed
again & again
at trying to be her,
can’t we just have a go at me being this one?

& not consider each time i push for answers
to be two steps backward into the abyss of unknowns?
that grey area
where you can’t tell where the horizon is,
the foreground from the background,
or anything in between
is what got me here
in the first place.

this is me
in the middle of a room
with a hundred different paint swatches of grey
laid out around me
holding each one up to the light
to see if it matches the walls.

“is it more of a ‘classic french grey’? … no? how bout an ‘earl grey’? or ‘gauntlet grey’?

i think i got it–

“agreeable grey”

missing people easily isn’t natural for him
& now that i think about it,
it isn’t for me too.

i’ve had boyfriends go on
long family vacations
even deployments
& they’d have to pull the words out of me
“don’t you miss me yet?” they’d ask.
i’d say it because..
you’re supposed to say it.
but it was usually such a relief to have them away
it told me i could be fine without
which i thought was just because i’m reasonable
independent
just slightly emotionally detached.

but with you,
i’m afraid
i may be at the mercy of my feelings
i’m terrified
i may fall apart when you leave.
& the ache will be a throbbing never ending feeling
that can’t be satiated with texts
& quick layover visits
& facetime
& alexa drop-ins

& you’ll think to yourself,
this girl just feels too much
& assume that this is my M.O when people leave me,

but it’s as if my heart just reserved all this,
just for you.

chicken or egg?

love thrives where love is rooted in commitment

what came first,
commitment? or trust?

how do i commit to something
that may or may not be real?

how do you trust someone
who you’re not sure can commit to you?

we’re both standing at the airplane door
shivering in anticipation
parachutes neatly folded in our packs
yelling to be heard above the roar of the engine,
urging the other:
“jump first! im right behind you!”

am i the fool for leaping first?

actions speak louder

im told talk is cheap,
& maybe im asking way too many questions
filling up the space with them
suffocating you with them.

if i just sit quietly
& feel you brushing my hair back from my forehead for the thousandth time today
& realize im the only girl in this room
the girl you’ve chosen to share this sacred space with
i’d have my answers.

so eyes,
dont give it away.
dont let them tumble out
& ruin the moment.
because there’s only so much room here,
& i dont want to fill that space with tough questions.
id much rather fill it with you
resting peacefully next to me.