Some of you know my dude, some of you don’t. His nickname for me is ‘Monkey.’ Mine for him is ‘Bug’, as in ‘Love Bug.’ He lives up to it. And I live up to mine, though ‘cheeky’ generally precedes it.
We’ve known each other for eleven years and have been solidly together for three of them. He was my riding partner when I first started riding motorcycles again eight years ago. Bug and Monkey for the win!
Why am I sharing this with you?
I had a particularly bad go of things last week. I’d stopped using some of my regular supplements (not a euphemism, folks, not meds, but probably should be some days) and had spent entirely too much time diddling on Facebook, which, of course, inevitably lead to comparing myself (and my many failures) to every single one of my ‘friends.’
I think we all know how destructive that can be to any psyche, let alone a slightly fragile one. It was just one of those days.
By Friday afternoon, I was ready to eat my own face. Golly, I sound delightful don’t I?
♥ ♥ ♥
I really needed to talk, so I called him at work and erupted like Vesuvius. About my frustrations, about my failures, about my sunburn and toenails. I turned a lovely shade of lavender hunching there on the bed, but venting to him helped talk me down from my metaphorical ledge.
When my Bug came home, we greeted each other the way we always do, with a hug. Bug hugs are the best. Need those eight a day people!
Cheek to cheek, I confided that I was nervous about sharing the gory details of my oh-so-shitty-day because I know he wants me to be happy. Like a happy person. Just generally happy. Not disturbed by things. In other words, weird, like him.
Eeeeeeerrrrrkkkk. Let’s rewind.
In January, around the New Year, we’d written out personal goals for ourselves, and we also had a great talk about our desires with regard to our relationship. You know, just checking in about where we were going and areas we might need to improve.
He is the happiest, most stable, most even-keel human being I’ve ever met. And he was kind of hoping for me to someday approach a similar emotional palette. A more stable platform of emotional health.
Knowing my capacity for happiness instability, he’s well aware of who I am at this stage of the game. Yet he still held out hope. And let me say this now: So. Do. I. But I ain’t holding my breath for it.
I’m not a miserable monkey all the time or anything. Like most of us, I just have my moments. But my world-view is not exactly what one might call optimistic.
So we chatted back then and I simply said,
Well, this is me. I’m a work in progress, ever evolving, but if you love me, love me for who I am right now. In this moment. Because I may never be anything more than this.
And that was that.
♥ ♥ ♥
This word, ‘okay’, is not spectacular. Four little letters, not even pretty. Almost harsh, actually. I didn’t really understand what it meant, what he meant, till last week. And I’ll get to that in a minute, but first let me show you how writers have been using that simple word to mean so much.
In The Fault In Our Stars, John Green gives ‘okay’ to his leads like a gift. It’s their unique thing, their code word for ‘always’ that only they understand. It’s sweet, and beautiful, and heartbreaking. That one word holds their universe inside it.
I’ve mentioned this next one before in my Superhero Sensitive post.
SPOILER ALERT: At the end of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, after Clementine tells Joel all the reasons their relationship redux won’t work and how he’ll find things he doesn’t like about her and how she’ll get bored with him because that’s what she does, he shrugs and simply says, “Okay.”
The first time I watched that scene, it was like someone had suddenly smacked me with the ugly-cry stick. That simple moment of his acceptance was breathtaking. Acknowledging that what she meant to him was more important than everything else, even self-preservation.
♥ ♥ ♥
Fast forward to last week. Back to the Bug hug. After I told him how I was afraid to talk to him about my miserable effing day for fear he might remember that he’d prefer a more optimistic partner, someone slightly less wiggy and spiky around the edges.
He pulled away enough to look at me and said, “but we already talked about that.”
“What do you mean?”
“We had that talk and you said if I love you, I love you for who you are right now.”
“You actually did that?”
♥ ♥ ♥
That’s what love looks like to me. And that’s why I love this man. Plus a million other reasons. But that’s a really, really good one.
Helen Fielding was on to something too, yeah?Hurray for 'okay.' Hurray for love...just as we are. Click To Tweet
Tell me what love looks like to you. For your significant other, your kid, your parent, your cat, your pet cockroach. Matters not to me whom it involves. Just tell me about the love. We need more of it floating around the interwebs.
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Thanks for sharing your time and stories with me. Be warned, I may steal them at some point. It’s what we do.