“Much has been said about love…” – Every writer trying to write about love
Say what you will about Valentine’s Day, it has already been said before. Lovely, weird, silly, stupid, expensive, polarizing, fake, cliche — all those words are true.
It is hard to celebrate love without celebrating something that isn’t real. The love we see in romantic comedies, in Disney’s wide eyed princes, in reality shows with fantasy suites and cheap red roses–it is such a giant spectacle. At the end of the day, no one wants to raise their glass or exchange chalky hearts to that kind of love.
Real love is problematic, messy, covered in boring dinners and rehashed arguments on the quality of hand towels. Real love is not forever. You can be in love for decades and have it disappear. A boyfriend, a wedding, a ten year anniversary–they are not finish lines.
Real love is perpetual motion and constant work. The navigation of emotions and responses and honesty. The daily struggle against our selfish tendencies.
What I want to remember on this strange holiday is that the love worth celebrating is the love that stays even after the ugliest words and most shattered expectations. The love that fights, that fixes, that says all the words out loud. The love that keeps moving forward.
Like every other holiday we’ve made up, Valentine’s Day is what you want it to be.
May the love you seek find its way.