You know how you blush to your toes when you realise your boo has been staring so longingly at you...
I am also so sure you know that "I-never-want-this-feeling-to-end" kind of feeling...
All of these and more typify what most people "in-love" feel. One more of this kind of feeling is the "I-CARE-SO-MUCH-ABOUT-YOU" feeling.
When you are in love, you want to show just how much you care about your partner, right? Great to know we agree on this point.
Now, I am doubtlessly certain that we have heard the saying 'Love is blind, but marriage is the eye-opener". No matter how much of a kill-joy that saying feels like, let me assure you that it is beyond true.
When one is in love, you have all these gooey feelings and intentions towards your partner. When you get married and have to actually live out and express those feelings and intentions; therein lays the tricky part.
Let us examine just one of these feelings. An individual in love would declare that he/she cares deeply for and about his/her partner. That is just so splendid. Now let us break down that declaration.
Caring for and about someone means that person is so important to you. It means you rate the individual’s comfort and happiness very highly, most times above yourself.
Darlings, let me be the first to admit to you that I learnt the cold truth about what it really means to care about someone.
I am in a relationship with one of God's finest specimens of the male specie (THANK YOU! –and those who know him will agree with me *wink*) and I admit I am so in love with him.
Now, he took ill last week and naturally my instinct was to take care of him and nurse him. I had all the good intentions but when it came down to the actual act of implementing my intentions, I realised it wasn’t as rosy and butterfly-ey as I had pictured.
First off, I had to miss work on a Monday, just so that I could take him to the hospital. As if that wasn’t bad enough, I got infected with the flu he was being treated for and by Tuesday evening, I was quite ill myself.
Now things got really interesting. Here I was feeling very ill and woozy from the cold I had, yet I had to continue caring for my baby. I had to cook, drive around to get his drugs and generally cater to and nurse him. I would not deceive you brethren and say it felt good- cos it didn’t!
Were there times I wanted to lie back and be pampered myself? Of course, you bet there were?
Did I feel like quitting and asking that someone acknowledge that I was also ill? Definitely!
But did I stop? NO.
You want to know why... Cos I truly love and care about him. I am willing to inconvenience myself for him. I am willing to put my own desires on the back-burner for a little bit and focus on his needs.
I learnt a big lesson during this episode: love, commitment and marriage is nothing like the image most of us have in our heads. It involves real life issues and actions. Marriage is not that 24hr state of euphoria that some of us picture it to be. Marriage is sharing your life with someone else. Marriage means being with your spouse through everything they experience and go through. Marriage means being there during sickness, health, good mood, bad mood, failure, success, elation, depression....name it
Ladies, please look beyond his perfectly starched H&C shirt, his impeccable accent and the fact that he always smells so nice. Picture him hurdled over a toilet bowl purging because of the food poisoning he got from eating the salad at his last business meeting. Does he still appeal to you in that state? Do you still care about him enough to clean up his mess if he misses the toilet bowl while rushing into the toilet to do the no. 2?
Guys, take your eyes off those killer-curves, perfect hair and well-manicured nails. Picture her throwing up on your favourite Billionaire tie and farting incessantly during the early stages of her pregnancy. Picture her with her spit-can, swollen nose and humongous feet during the last trimester. Picture her wearing her hairnet and bathroom slippers trying to chase your 2 year old son around the house while cooking your dinner when all you want is a minute of peace and quiet. Do you shudder at the thought of that?
Friends, marriage is an eye-opener. It takes the rose-tints off this phenomenon called love. Love is beyond the external or the exterior. It is more about the internal and the interior.
Whenever you say you love someone or care about someone, take a minute to pause and reflect on what you really mean. Weigh the implication of your declaration.
Ladies, declaring that you love a man enough to marry him means you are willingly submitting to him. Ask yourself, can you give up some of your career goals just to manage his home-affairs more efficiently? If he looses his job, will you still accord him as much respect as you do at the moment?
Guys, declaring that you love a woman enough to marry her means you are willing to make her the sole object of your sexual fulfilment. Ask yourself, if after she has had children for you, the curves are no longer as sleek as they were, would you still find her attractive? Would you still be proud enough to say she is the most beautiful woman in the world to you?
There is a place for the mushiness and the gooey-ness of love, true. But of far more importance is the place of honest self-examination.
For me, the events of the past week made me do some self-examining of my own. I realised that even though caring for my beloved was not the easiest or most fun thing to do, I did it willingly and I feel so satisified. All I wanted was for him to get better.
And let me quickly balance this up. Please make sure the individual you are committing this much of yourself to is worth the hassle. Don’t throw your treasure to the swine. Ensure that this person will do the same and even more for you if the roles were reversed. Anything short of this is tantamount to pouring water into a basket. If you feel you have so much sacrificial love in you that you need to lavish on someone, go to an orphanage or a home for the less-privileged and love up on them. Being in love makes you act the fool once in a while but that’s okay so long as your partner will also act the fool for you. Stop being a foolish fool.
To be fair to my baby, he was really appreciative of everything I did and he didn’t hesitate to show just how he felt. I could garner the inner strength I needed to care for him because I am more than rest assured he will do more for me if he were in my shoes. Call it selfishness or whatever, I will N.E.V.E.R be in a relationship with a man who doesn’t bring at least the same strength of emotional commitment into it as I do.
On a final note, please open your eyes when dealing with love-issues. Enjoy the sparkly, giddy feeling it brings but remember to take off those rose-tinted shades and ask yourself what really lies behind the gooey-ness.
I love you all.
Talk to y'all later.
Feel free to drop a comment.
Twitter : @darhmielawlar