According to the webster dictionary, there are eight definitions for the word “Love”. Eight!
love noun \ˈləv\
: a feeling of strong or constant affection for a person
: attraction that includes sexual desire : the strong affection felt by people who have a romantic relationship
: a person you love in a romantic way
Full Definition of LOVE
1 a (1): strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties <maternal love for a child> (2): attraction based on sexual desire : affection and tenderness felt by lovers : affection based on admiration, or common interests <love for his old schoolmates>b: an assurance of affection <give her my love>
2: warm attachment, enthusiasm, or devotion <love of the sea>
3a: the object of attachment, devotion, or admiration <baseball was his first love>b (1): a beloved person : darling —often used as a term of endearment (2)British —used as an informal term of address
4a: unselfish loyal and benevolent concern for the good of another: as (1): the fatherly concern of God for humankind (2): brotherly concern for othersb: a person’s adoration of God
5: a god or personification of love
6: an amourous episode : love affair
7: the sexual embrace : copulation
8: a score of zero (as in tennis)
Why so many? Love as a word is both overused and underused in today’s society. Why is it acceptable and even easier to say “I love ice cream and rock music” than it is to tell someone you love them? Of course, there’s also the opposite of that – where people feel the need to share their “love” when it’s actually something more closely related to lust.
A friend told me a story last night. The story of the first time he and his current SO said “I love you” to each other. A week into their relationship, they knew how they felt and felt rock solid in sharing with each other. I was enchanted by this unabashed, unafraid sharing of emotions, and shared my adoration of their relationship to my friend.
That’s just it – sharing emotions. Why is it that sharing an emotion with someone is so difficult, especially if that emotion is something other than happiness? Is it the mask we put on? We are all human. We cry, we get angry, we dream and have insecurities, we get distracted and even occasionally become our own version of a space cadet. Knowing that we all do it – why do we have such a hard time sharing that with others who, ultimately, are likely feeling the exact same things we are!
Men seem to have this problem a bit more than women. There’s this old fashioned stigma that men are supposed to be strong. That they aren’t supposed to be gushing their feelings and thoughts. What utter bullshit. Strength to me isn’t the ability to hide your emotions from others. It’s having those emotions and still moving forward, in spite of them. It’s having the courage to say what you feel, when you feel it and owning it for what it is. I think I get caught in a trap of my own making when it comes to this type of thing. Always trying to be strong, always hiding what I’m really thinking or feeling because I don’t want to upset or hurt someone. I’ll keep my feelings to myself at my expense if it means I can ensure the folks I’m around are happy and moving forward. If there was a definition of a human doormat in the dictionary, I swear, it would have my picture.
Today I am going to strive to tell it how it is, when it is. 🙂 I’m not going to fear rejection or humiliation. I’m going to live in each moment, own the emotions I feel and find strength in sharing them with others. Wish me luck. 🙂 Perhaps there’s still a chance for me to no longer be the doormat I’ve always been.