Now I figure it’s as good a time as any to write about love. Though it’s daunting and confusing. And at best it’s a fine case of the blind leading the blind. I figure as I turn the corner to 40 years I know a little bit more about love than I did at 16. And a good deal of that knowledge is tinted with heartache and sadness.
You know I’ve been lucky. I’ve been loved. By a great many people. In a great many ways. Sometimes I forget that and I get lonesome and selfish. But the truth is there are people in the world who never get to know the grace of falling asleep with someone beside you who loves you and wants to know you. Someone who looks at me like I am good and right. And I have been loved without question by family and friends. People I would sometimes push to their limits. And sometimes past. I’ve been one tough son of a bitch to love. I know this. It’s hard to watch someone you love trying to kill themselves. And it’s harder still to have your love spit back in your face. And I did my fair share of that. Often I pray that some kind of grace touches the heart of those I hurt. That they don’t carry my weight too heavy on their spirits. That somehow they know I am sorry. Even if I cannot tell them because of time, space and losses.
But some of them people are pieces of the happiest memories I have. The warmth of being young and surrounded by people who wanted nothing but to have you alive and well and there with them. To just be embraced. Christmas mornings. Happy wild nights. And everything between.
And then there is your love. And I want so badly to be able to write something deep and meaningful. But the truth is that I’ve never found the words to describe it. Except to say it’s the love I am most unworthy of but the love I value the most. And the best feeling I ever have known is when you just up and come to me with a hug or a kiss, just because you want to. Not because I did anything to deserve it or asked for it or you felt obliged to. Just because. And in a long life of love and hurt too. In those little moments. You’re the greatest blessing I know. And you’re proof that there is forgiveness, redemption and the grace of God the world. Yet it always leaves me sort of awed that you love me. That I could be so lucky. Sometimes I think I know what it’s like to hear your numbers read when you’re holding a million dollar ticket.
As a man who is teetering and tipping back and forth at faith. I got to tell you. I believe that God loves me too. But I don’t know what that means. Or how it plays out. I see his love in your eyes and in little fingers. Maybe sometimes I see it too in the voice of a lover. I may even see it in the blessings I have received. But me and God have had a long history of standing at odds. Mostly on my part. But I’m getting there and I cannot dismiss it. Because truth is, I wouldn’t be here right now were it not for something divine and the intercession of a loving God. And listen even if I am wrong about it all. Is it really wrong to include one more love in your life? So always keep your heart open there. Theology be damned. It’s just about saying God is God and it ain’t me. And he loves me regardless.
Now as you can see…I don’t know nothing about love. And anything I tell you is stuff I’m learning as I go. Sort of on the fly. But there is one absolute. My love for you. It has no end. There is nothing, not one single thing you can do or reason you can give me to not love you. To turn from you. NOT ONE THING. There may be things that make me sad or hurt to watch. But I will never turn myself from you. Always know that okay baby. There is that rock and nothing can break it. The very first words I said to you were “Hello baby, I love you. Daddy loves you.” And that will always be. But do your old man a favor. Don’t test this old heart too much. Like maybe skip the teenage rebellion and the boyfriend who needs to pull up his pants. And just go to the young woman who loves her gruff and curmudgeonly old man even when he mumbles and doesn’t smile enough.
Boy if this thing is going to be cohesive I am going to have to start writing pieces that make some sense. In a literary sense anyway.
Maybe next time I do a piece on car repair and breakfast recipes.