I remember a time when meeting someone who was just as damaged was a bit of a relief. Everyone walking…
If you’re here and reading this, odds are you want what most of us desire. To be in a happy relationship. To feel secure sleeping next to a person, knowing they won’t rob you in the middle of the night and hope they surprise you with breakfast in the morning. Knowing that person will be there to inspire us and motivate us to become the best versions of us that we can be. We just want someone who feels like they get us and our damage. Someone to love our scars and flaws and inconsistencies because they can’t imagine going through life another day without us. What we all genuinely crave is to feel like someone is on our side. A lifelong teammate. This is hardly scratching the surface of the definition of love, but you know what I’m saying.
What it really comes down to is being able to walk through the door and seeing that person and with a glance, having the troubles of the world wash away in their smile. Knowing they have been waiting for you to come home and share your day and so you can listen to theirs. If there is a trait you should always look in a person is someone that can make your baggage feel a little lighter. Like they helped you find the confidence to carry those bags and made your journey a little easier.
The definition of love is never the same. Because each of us has different standards and there are so many distinct approaches one needs in order to feel loved and appreciated. And while the journey takes various twists and turns, the destination is always the same. Ask anyone who has ever loved and wanted to feel loved and they will tell you that they can, will, and have put up with or compromised more than they ever believed in the hopes to feel loved and appreciated every single day. Because that is all we have ever needed.
Notice I didn’t say “all we have ever wanted.” Because there is a huge distinction.
There are plenty of things we want out of a relationship. And far too often we confuse those things. We lie to ourselves and believe what we want is what we need. And that isn’t good for our soul. And so many people in this world are simply little kids who got old. We got older and no one taught us how to love or appreciate love. So many of us don’t know ourselves well enough to even recognize our insecurities, much less posses the ability to confront those demons. And if you haven’t started that process, you can’t truly recognize the person you see in the mirror. And if we don’t know who we are, we couldn’t possibly know what we need. But like any child, we definitely know what we want.
Ask any average kid what they want in a wife, husband, girlfriend, or boyfriend and you will get answers raging from having lots of money to big houses to fitting a specific look to having a nice body to having a nice smile or being funny, and the list goes on. But as an adult, you know that none of these things will nurture your soul. You can’t give children what they want all the time. Because odds are, they won’t choose what is best for their growth. And you can’t expect children who have gotten older without truly learning who they are inside to make the best choices for themselves. Because while they might look like adults who know what they want, they certainly aren’t sure what it is that they need.
Compassion, patience, generosity, and a inspirational spirit are some of the things that we need to make our investment feel safe. But again, everyone is different. Some need those traits more than others and some less than. But the two things we all need – no matter where were are or what baggage we carry, are to feel loved and appreciated every single day. Not once a week or on special occasions. Not for holidays where we are guilted by a candy, flower, and jewelry industry into buying things, or by writing out a cowardly “I love you” at the end of a store-bought card.
None of us like to feel fooled or like we were conned into a relationship. You should always make people feel like they got a good deal. Like they saw something that no one else did and they got in and snatched you up before anyone realized they left behind a winning lottery ticket. We should feel happy, even proud, of our investment. Because when we invest time, energy, tears, and emotion into another person we should feel like it had a purpose. That we gave ourselves in trust with another amazing person who knew just what to do with our heart. It was our secret pact. Our “Hey, I’m giving this to you to hold, please don’t drop it.”
And that is what we NEED. Someone who is not only careful enough not to drop it, but wonderful enough to be happy to hold it. Someone who understands just how big of a deal is it that you would trust even after you have been lied to and abused in the past – you learned how to trust again and you gave that trust back. Someone who is excited to be around you and their happiness is derived by how many times they can make you laugh in a day. Or how they can put a smile on your face with a sneak kiss on your neck. Or a smile with a look from across the room.
That is what our soul needs. And while it would be amazing to find all the things we want AND need in a person, we need to do what’s best and most healthy for our investment. To give our time and love the respect it deserves. To prove to ourselves that we have enough to respect to want more and better for our heart and head. And the only way to do that is to determine what we need. Not what we want.