Tuesday, June 17, 2008

I love you

The three simple words that everyone longs to hear.
The three simple words that can cause so much complication.
The three simple words that express so much, yet so little.
Easy to say, harder to do.

I recently got an award from CUSS that I put in my blog award bookshelf at the bottom of my sidebar. It says on it 'I love you'. Like all other blog awards, you are supposed to pass it on. The thing is, I really can't. The three simple words for me are not so simple.

I've been calling my mom to make sure that she uses the air conditioner, is drinking and eating. The other day I almost said 'I love you' but choked it back. I have told my mom 'love you' maybe once or twice, but never the full three words, come to think of it. My family never said these three simple words to each other. I never heard my parents say these words to each other.

I used to feel bad about this (and sometimes still do), but really, my family shows their love for each other in many ways. We care about each other. Check in. Help out. It would be nice if we could express the love using these simple words, but we don't. And that's just the way it is.

For those of you who wonder, I have said it/do say it to the men I've loved/do love in my life. Once I figured out this issue, my goal has been to have more open relationships than I experience in my family. I know a consequence of not having more openness in my family is seeking it out in men, and in a different way, in friends. Thankfully I'm a cautious person so for the most part I haven't chosen bad men to be attached to (but oh those mistakes stick around for a long time!).

That doesn't mean it doesn't hurt when it goes. They say it's better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. I really think it's true, but it really sucks when you lose it, to put it very mildly.

I'm sitting here thinking about when I started living this way - opening myself up for the potential for pain. I think it's been a process over time since high school. Growing up in the family I did, I didn't know how to be open and was scared to death of it, but needed it desperately. So, over time I got to know myself, and got to know other people - make connections. I used to cling tightly for fear love would never come again, but it truly is a cycle, though not necessarily with the same person.

There's a movie you should watch - Truly, Madly, Deeply. It's way old at this point, but one of the stars is the guy who plays Snape. But if I remember correctly, it captured love really well...or maybe at least the losing of love (though I just checked the reviews and they sucked). I have had one all encompassing love that didn't work out in the end, and watching this movie was sad at the time.

But feeling is better than being numb or a zombie, and I keep trying to live that way. It's never easy though.

12 comments:

evil-e said...

I have choked on that phrase many a time....and I come from a very loving family. I don't use that phrase very much, it is not something to be thrown around loosely and it is the polar opposite of another equally strong phrase, "I hate you". Neither of which should be used too quickly.

Nice post.

ordinaryjanet said...

I don't know, my family wasn't big on expressions of love, either, but I knew they loved me. I think it's more what you do and not what you say.

Belle - A Beauty livin with her Beast said...

I think these words are issues with everyone. When I was little you could say it as much as you wanted to my mom, but my dad would rarely say it to anyone. Now my oldest daughter will barely tell anyone that she loves them, and my youngest tells me all the time. My husband thinks those words magically makes every fight end, and everything that has happened better. It is funny how it has different meaning, when it should only mean one thing.

The CEO said...

I'd say that you have a typical family, at least for the time frames involved. Still, a very insightful, well conceived discussion.

NoRegrets said...

Evil-e - at least as adults. Kids are sort of given a pass with the 'I hate you thing'. Thanks...
Ordinaryjanet - I agree, but it's still nice to hear.
Belle - maybe it's kind of like eskimos and snow? oh, wait, it's the inverse of that.
CEO - what do you mean by 'the time frames involved'?

Susan said...

We have a lot of "I love you"s in my family. I've never had a problem with saying it. I doubt I ever do.

WNG said...

We say it all the time in my family. I learned early that you could love people even while you were angry, hurt, pissed and even ashamed of them. To me love means many many different things and I love my friends and family in different ways. It doesn't end fights and it doesn't even mean that the person won't hurt me, it just means that through it all I love them.

Squirrel said...

Really great post. I agree that the words are less important than actions, but they're still nice to hear (and to say), if you can swing it, and if it's genuine. Not something to be cheapened.

Feeling is definitely better than being a zombie, even if it opens the door to a world of hurt sometimes.

NoRegrets said...

Thanks Squirrel...

heather said...

i rarely say it. cheeks gets a 'sweet dreams, sweet pea' when i tuck her in at night and a quick hug at random moments throughout the day but i've never been all that big on saying 'i love you'

for some reason my first reaction each and every time i hear that is 'what do you want?'
that can't be healthy.
can it?

NoRegrets said...

Heather, I'm not a psychologist, but I play one on TV...and I'd say yes. ...

Churlita said...

I'm the total opposite. I was a walking open wound for most of my life. Which isn't necessarily better. I have that whole "orphaned as a child" thing that makes me tell people that I love them while they're around because I don't remember if I told my mom I loved her the last morning I saw her when I was 10.