Things that are True pt. 4 – Love is a Choice.

Love doesn’t start as a choice, but it becomes one. The all-too-lovely feeling of being completely head over heels for someone is so drunk-ing-ly magical; and also entirely allusive. The most life-changing part of love is not in the fall, but the commitment – it’s when it becomes a choice. Loving someone is easy when you’re falling in love. All the feelings are there, and the most unattractive things about your counterpart are hidden by the emotion and allure of falling in love. It’s later, when the truth starts to come out and you meet the bad of your counterpart face-to-face; it’s later, when the circumstances of life become more difficult with the loss of a loved one, or the loss of a job, or the loss of “that loving feeling”, or the loss of fidelity – that’s when love is a choice. The most magic and most life-changing love is the love that stands the test of time – it’s the love that loves through loss, the love that loves through pain, the love that loves through lies- and even scarier, the love that loves through truth – that’s the love that breaks mountains in two and changes the course of a storm and brings the dead to life. Some people say true love is a fairy tale, that it’s not possible. I don’t believe that. I believe true love is real. It’s real when two eighty-year old people are still married after sixty years despite all the life and strife they’ve lived. I believe it’s real when I see a committed woman tending her husband’s bedside after he’s been paralyzed from the waist-down after a bike accident. I believe it’s real when I watch a man stay married to his wife after she’s been caught cheating on him for the fourth time. Everyone can love well when it’s easy. It’s the hard stuff that separates the boys from the men and the girls from the women. That’s when love really becomes love – when it’s a choice… and not an easy choice, but a hard one.

N. Ford