It’s a topic that I’ve kept off of this blog, but this post has been under my skin all week. Perhaps I’ve avoided it here by choice, or out of respect for the theme, but if the purpose of the space is to offer the opportunity to examine my life- then it’s only fair to admit that the topic has been on my mind lately.
I won’t pretend to have a good handle on love, in fact, my brother probably puts it best – “romantic relationships seem to have a particularly strong negative effect on your normally sound judgement and careful decision making.” He’s right, romance tends to bend me out of shape worse than any alpine sufferfest. Maybe that’s why I’ve found myself rolling solo much more than a duo- but this is not really about romance, it’s about love.
Love is what you share when you are more excited about what you have to give someone than what you might receive from them. Love is what you accept when being around someone compels you to be the very best version of yourself and no one else.
Thank you to those of you who have recently asked me to be more discerning about what this word really means.
“Love is not sincere until every vestige of feeling that somebody owes us something is surrendered.” (Michael Booth)
Have you heard of/read “The Art of Loving” by Erich Fromm? It was written in the 1950s, so some of the content is a bit dated, but the central thesis, that love is a skill that must be acquired and developed over a lifetime, rings very true to me. Lots of similar themes as you touch on here. Fromm writes “Love is an activity, not a passive affect; it is a ‘standing in,’ not a ‘falling for.’ In the most general way, the active character of love can be described by stating that love is primarily *giving*, not receiving.”