Decadent Â chocolates, diamond bracelets, elaborate valentines cards. Â Â Young Â lovers gazingÂ Â into each other’s eyes, dreaming of the perfect Â love.
A beautiful reminder that in a troubled world, that somehow, somewhere, there is always Â love.
But these images offer only Â a shallow glimpse of Â love. Oddly, Â we Â equate love with young love, with “being in love,” Â while overlooking the most beautiful love of all, that of old love. Â This Â is not Â the exhilarating Â flush of new love. Â It is Â the Â flame that flickers in the furious storm, yet Â leaps to warm the trembling heart.
Old love has seen Â glory and brokenness, Â trust and Â betrayal. Â It has known exhilaration and endured Â tedium. It has yielded to Â the warm
embrace and recoiled at the jagged Â word. Â Through it all, it was always Â love that Â soothed Â the chafing of the marital yoke.
The beauty of old love is not that of Â the unfurling rosebud.Â Like the facets of a diamond, this love Â is Â patiently sculpted and refined over years. Â It is Â nurtured by the Â light of understanding but Â withers in the darkness of anger. Â It Â flourishes Â on the rock of trust and crumbles on the shaky sands of deceit.
And old love is not Â merely Â finishing the race side by side. Â Such is only a sad counterfeit born of pride, cowardice or simple inertia. Â It is Â a lifetime of Â shared experiences, comfortable perhaps, but bereft of Â joy. Â The Â heart well knows the difference.
Old love is longing for the other and yet Â straining against the marital tether. Â It is knowing everything yet nothing about the other. Â It is Â melding into the other yet retaining oneself. Â It is Â freely sharing, Â families, children, sickness, possessions; all of Â it, all of life. Â It is unrelenting challenge; it is warmÂ fulfillment. Â It is at Â once exhilarating and terrifying,
So to all Â young lovers this Valentine’s Day: Â Join Â us if you will. Â But know this: Â Old love must be earned. Â It will test your Â strength and challenge your resolve. It will require your best and forgive your worst. Â It will plumb your depths and expand your soul. Â And Â the rewards are beyond imagination for those who Â stay the course. Â
This blog is dedicated to my “old love” of 40 years. Â Happy Valentines Day, Sweetheart.Â