Seeing as this issue is the last before that glorious pink-and-red day of extreme emotional turmoil—otherwise known as Valentine’s Day—there’s no better time than the present to talk about the L word. While the concept of love is probably too complex to cover in its entirety in a few hundred words, I do have some thoughts.
Love, in my experience, is never really what you thought it would be. When I was younger, I had a very clear picture of what love meant—shaped largely by an early obsession with Rhett and Scarlett in Gone with the Wind. Love was supposed to be all-consuming, passionate, and fiery. I thought that when I fell in love, my life would be instantly glamorous, and that I would be adored. Imagine my surprise when I grew up and fell in love, only to discover that not all loves are epic sagas, and not many men appreciate hysterics (no matter how good you look in a corset).
Learning that you can’t predict or anticipate who you will love, or how you will love them, has been a long and confusing process for me, but I think that I finally get it. As soon as you can accept what love really is at its core—which I personally think has to do with finding someone that makes you happy more often than not, that makes you want to be a better person, and that will still hold your hand when Atlanta is burning—you can learn what love means to you.
Happy Valentine’s Day. I love you.