Wednesday, January 23, 2008

the evolution of love

it started as a child. feelings of comfort, safety, security. knowing that even if you were naughty they would still love you. the endless sacrifices to make sure that you were happy and healthy. you knew you depended on them for your sustenance and happiness. and you loved them for all that they did for you.

as you got older you thought love had something to do with boys. the grade school crush that was all about giddy laughter and "is he looking at me?" chit chat to girlfriends. junior high wasn't much better ... the same crushes on boys you didn't even know but stalked through the halls because they were soooo cute. notes to your friends folded up into little arrows and triangles spilling your guts about your young obsession. even in high school you were more in love with the idea of being in love than with any one person, and even when you really thought you knew what love was because you were oh so mature, love was selfish and fading.

you later learned that love had so much meaning in the form of friendship. girlfriends that were more like sisters, a sister (and brother) who were more like friends, roommates that knew you better than you knew yourself and loved you anyway. you were finally able to really be friends with boys without confusing love and friendship and you learned to put others before yourself.

and then you leave the country to love and serve people in a culture so different from your own. you teach them about god's love and you learn to love them in spite of all of the differences between you as you start to see beyond to who they really are. you leave part of your heart there with them when you return home.

you hope you are ready for the love of a lifetime, and after years of failed love and heartache you finally find true love. you fall hard and fast even though you are scared to death. you open your heart slowly and cautiously and take your time so as not to be hurt yet again. and then you marry your best friend knowing that you will love him forever and ever and you give away your heart to him. you think you finally know what love really is. you think that you will never love so hard and so deep ever again. each day you love him more and you wonder how there is enough room in that heart of yours to keep feeling more each day. you have good days and bad days together. you laugh and you cry together. you dream of the future together and you really love.

and then you find out he's on his way after years of waiting. you rub your little belly hoping he knows how excited you are to meet him and that even though you have never seen him you already love him so much it hurts. you get emotional just thinking about all the joy he will bring to your life and you feel the day can't come soon enough that you will finally hold him in your arms. and then it comes.

you love him instantly and are so overwhelmed by it. you love his itty bitty cry and his teeny tiny face and you love everything that he is and all that he brings to you. you love that he is a product of your love for your husband and you love that he is a gift to your family. and each day you can't believe it could be possible, but somehow you love him more and more. your heart can't possibly hold any more, yet it continues to stretch and grow. you didn't know it was possible to have your heart outside of your body, but every little thing he does shows you that he is your heart and that his happiness and his safety and his security is the most important thing in the world to you. you love that he depends on you for everything, that you are his source of nourishment and care and learning. you love that your sacrifices may go unnoticed for a while, but that one day he will grow up and have his own and only then will he know the extent of the love that you feel for him.

and then you realize why God lets us have children. you feel just a tiny portion of what He continually feels for us and you know that He is teaching you how to become like He is. you know that He only wants the best for you and that He would do anything for your happiness, your safety, and your security. you know that you depend on Him for your life and your breath and that His sacrifice has made all things possible. and He loves that you are finally getting a glimpse of what He feels for you.

8 comments:

gab said...

wow...that was really beautiful...to read and to look at! thanks for stopping by my blog. i love mique and marta...so it sounds like we will get along. i will be back!

The A-Team said...

beautifully written, jess. it's nice to go online and spend some time reading quality and then to move on with my day having what's important be on my mind. thank you for sharing.

amy

Madsen Family said...

Jess, so aptly put. I love the jr. high references with the triangle notes (so did that) and it is so true about the evolution of love...you are a poet, girl! And, I think that it would be impossible NOT to love that darling face that is on that little boy of yours. He is nothing but cute, cute, cute!!

Tracie said...

Again with the crying! Jess- you kill me. I come to see adorable pictures and leave feeling completely in touch with motherhood and my purpose here. I needed that today! thanks.

Amber said...

The Carmel reference lured me over here from Stie's place (we're going there for a romantic getaway next month). But it was your beautiful writing that made me stay. Well put!

Becca's Blog said...

I LOVE that little picture of Owen at the end. You are a great writer. You just have a good way of wording things.

Dr. faq said...

huhuhu this awesome written make me cry. seriously it touch my feeling until i stop crying. Hello dude, how u can do that? Hm... i will come here later.. :)

Holly said...

Love how you are able to express your emotions so freely! I think the instant love we feel for our children is amazing! I love how you said you realize why God allows us to have children. It reminds me of a song by Kenneth Cope (?). The words say something like...'We know she won't belong to us, but she's here to teach her song to us.' Gets me everytime! They really do teach us soooo much! What a wonderful mother you must be to have such a beautiful angel in your home!!!