Dear Younger Me: Love

Dear younger me,

I made some mistakes with this one.

Love is pain, darling. It’s beautiful, but it hurts. I’m talking about earthly love, of course. The imperfect kind.

For all your wisdom, you were naïve the first time. It’s not your fault. For all the lessons learned, you were too idealistic the second time. You have this most priceless quality, my dear, of almost always seeing the good in people. This is why your hope must remain in things eternal.

Love is pain. And don’t ever let anyone convince you that it wasn’t love. Don’t ever convince yourself that the second time wasn’t love, because it is.

You have to be vulnerable in love, dear. I’ve learned that “to love at all is to be vulnerable” ~ C.S. Lewis. I see you with all of your walls built up, your façade, finely tuned and nearly perfectly executed, pouring out love to others until their hearts are transparent and safe with you, but never revealing your true heart to them. Those walls come down, sweetheart. Not all at once, crumbling and crashing and cascading. But gently, steadily, patiently. They come down to a friend with a contagious smile, a patient faithfulness, and a sixth sense to see through every false “I’m okay.” To a girl with a soul on fire, ceaseless encouragement, and well-deep understanding. To a paradox of a boy with bloody, tender hands, ocean eyes, and a heart as deep as your own.

But love is pain. And people break things. It bleeds a long time, a broken heart. I’m still bleeding, if you want to know. And it’s not linear. I see the light of hope flicker and tremble and second guess. I see you begin to question the absolute truth you had once so adamantly believed; if love really conquers all. To believe love conquers all, you’d have to believe that it wasn’t love; to believe it was love, you’d have to believe that love does not conquer all. I’m not sure which hurt the most.

Love bears all things,

Believes all things,

Hopes all things,

Endures all things.

Love never ends.

I Corinthians 13:7-8a

Just wait a little longer, my child. Don’t doubt it. Love does conquer all, I promise. Yes, there is pain, and yes, it bleeds. But you find the one worth bleeding for. Listen carefully, sweet one: Love is always worth it. Romantic, friendship, selfless. It is worth it. The light in his eyes, the warmth in his smile, the hope in his soul, is worth every consequence of love, good and bad.

There is perfect love, too. God’s love.

Love isn’t just an idea;

it’s a Life given in our place.

~ Dr. Jeff Meyers

Jesus sacrificed His life for you so you could know God’s love, and that is why love is always worth it. God’s love is perfect. God loves you more in a moment than anyone could in a lifetime. You learn this the hard way, too. For all of your maturity, you learn a seemingly too many things the hard way, but it’s okay. I think everybody does. Besides, it is all sod for your bestselling novels, Lord willing.

Oh sweetie, you love this boy. You’ll bleed for him. But he is worth bleeding for. Love is sacrifice, Jesus proved so. And it is not defined by a number of chances. What is meant to be, will be. Any love that isn’t God’s love is not a pursuit of perfection, but, rather, of someone with whom you can be utterly imperfect, who handles this imperfection with matching measures of grace, but with whom you want to be the best version of yourself. He is worth bleeding for. The patience in his smile, the healing in his arms, the respect in his fingers tips, the effort in his actions, the faith in his eyes. You love this boy.

Whatever our souls are made of,

his and mine are the same.

Wuthering Heights

Love, my child. Even when it hurts, even when it bleeds, especially when it heals. Just love.

All my love,

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