So I was going to write a post about how I’ve always hated Valentine’s Day and how this year is especially bad. But, I decided not to and instead address a different topic that I want people’s input on. It’s about love, romantic love. :-)
So recently I’ve been challenged in my ideas as to what love and marriage are all about. I’ve always held the belief (well not always, but recently) that there isn’t “one person” on this earth for you. It’s a matter of finding someone that you care for deeply, and then choosing to love that person no matter what. And if there are issues (red flags) that come up that you aren’t able to compromise on, then maybe you should move on and find someone else. I felt the whole “love is a choice” thing very strongly this past August with everything that happened with Paul.
So this comes back to another idea I have, in that people are replaceable. That sounds horrible, but I think with my background of having to make all new friends every two years, I’ve kind of come to feel that. It helps me move on once I have to say goodbye to someone. No one is ever completely replaceable, but you will make new friends who affect you different ways.
With that idea in mind, I translate that to romantic love. So if friends are replaceable and if there isn’t one perfect person out there for you, then boyfriends must be replaceable too, right? So if it’s not practical for two people to be together then they should just say goodbye, expressing regret that a future was not possible, and then move on.
But then I wonder what situations would warrant this. Is love enough, if both couples are committed to each other? Or is practicality ever a factor in whether a couple should be together? I’m not talking about WHEN a couple should get married, but if EVER they should be together.
So my theory has blown up into my face. I love Paul, with all my heart. We have gone through some hard times together and are in some hard times right now, but I don’t want to give up on him. We were talking the other day about taking risks. You know the movies when the guy defeats all odds to get back the girl of his dreams. Is that ever realistic? According to my theory, no it isn’t because if you can’t make things work then you should move on to the next guy. According to my theory, Paul is a good thing but he doesn’t have to be the person I marry if it doesn’t practically work. However, in real life, I love Paul. I don’t want to leave him. I see so many great things about him and so many ways we mesh together well. So why should something like long distance be the breaking point of our relationship?
Paul told me (when were talking about this), “I am willing to risk everything to gain what I consider the most valuable treasure, the most precious person in the world to me.” I told him that risks weren’t practical, and he said that sometimes they are necessary. “I cannot believe that people are replaceble. I believe that everyone is unique and what is even more amazing is that our interaction with everyone we meet adds to our uniqueness. It creates a complexity that is impossible to measure or understand fully. I found you and I was like wow. I have been struck by you, by who you are. It’s like walking on the beach and seeing all the rocks and sand and something catches your eye. You stand out from all the rest. It’s not that I just like you but it’s that I would not mind spending my life understanding you. I would wait 20 years if it meant that I could spend the rest of my life with you.”
So what is it? Do you take the career chance of a lifetime and lose the person you love, or do you take possible poverty in order to be with her? To some (including my parents) a career is more important – that I need to focus on getting a good design job and paying off my loans and I’ll meet some nice (Presbyterian) boy along the way. But the workaholic often gets to the end of his life and realizes that he’s touch with the people who did love him.
I know ultimately a risk should be guided by God, and we’re not ignoring that. But as a rule, do you think love is something special that should be held onto no matter what? Or do you think it’s replaceable and should be given up the moment it becomes impractical?