“Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit” ~Peter Ustinov.
A few years back, I was on a very long interstate car ride and listening to Delilah (desperate listening: most stations were too static). A man called in to request a song for his true love, the woman he would soon would be married to. He gushed about how much he loved his bride to be, how wonderful she was, how lucky and happy he was.
Delilah asked him, “What is it about her that makes her so wonderful, that makes you love her so much?”
He responded enthusiastically, “She loves everything about me! I just love her so much for loving me!”
(Not the cannabis bong…
but the loud noise from a bell bong that means: WRONG ANSWER!!)
He had a lot to learn…
A long time ago a friend once counseled my husband-to-be and myself about things to expect when we got married. One of those things was attention.
That wiser-person-than-ourselves told us to expect that once children came: the level of attention we would give to one another would decrease greatly, and that at times we’d be exhausted, walking about like zombies, while caring for home, job, and children. Many times those words, like wind chimes in a hurricane, came back to haunt me. Truer words were never spoken, especially the zombie part…
“Love,” at times, meant that our relationship persevered in staggering chaos and with little to no attention given to each other! (We tried, but sometimes, for long periods of time, we were barely getting by, much less lavishing attentions upon each other!)
Date night? Did that count the times we took the kids to McDonald’s and chased them all around Play Place? Or perhaps the times we took them for ice cream and chased them all over the place, or the park and chased them all over the place, or the zoo and chased them all over the place or the grocery store and chased them all over the place…
Will Delilah’s caller be able to persevere when his “true-love-because-she-loves-me-so-much” bride can’t ‘love’ him with so much affection as children, exhaustion, and life pull her energies from her attentiveness to him?
Love is something you receive AND GIVE. Oftentimes it might be something you can only give, as your partner may be exhausted, overworked, clueless, or a mere mortal after all… Will his love survive then? Or was his love only a self absorbing ego trip? Time will tell.
The Way of Love has a name: it is Sacrifice. ~St. Josemaria Escriva