Can we talk about love? Is that OK? I know some subjects may be a little taboo; and love may very well be one of those subjects, but I think we should talk about it. Cool with you? Good…
Love has a lot of stages doesn’t it? There are good days and bad days. There are so many different types of love that it would be impossible for me to hit on every single one. Let’s go over some of them though…
There’s the love you get from family. There’s the love you give to family. This type of love is usually there for a long time. Even when fights break out, arguments occur, divorces happen—usually “family love” is a pretty lasting feeling.
There’s the love you have for your friends, and that they have for you. This love feels pretty amazing usually. No matter what, your friends have your back, and you have theirs, right? Maybe…This type of love sadly does not stay forever in most of our lives. Don’t get me wrong, there are definitely exceptions to this. I’m just saying, don’t automatically assume that when you have a friend in Kindergarten, that they will be crying at your funeral.
Then, there’s the love you have for certain things. Every single one of us loves something. Maybe it’s quiet time on the front porch watching traffic drive by. Maybe you love reading a certain author, or type of story. I have a kid that loves purple! She really does! Maybe you love a certain food, or a certain type of car. Maybe you love Taco Tuesdays. Maybe you love watching baseball. I love this kind of love! See what I did there?
When you first see your newborn child, and you zone out, and just look and stare at them…That’s an amazing love. That kind of love is reserved for your older years. When a kid sees their newborn sibling, or another baby at the store—they usually think “Aww, that baby is so cute!” They don’t normally immediately start thinking about where that kid will be in twenty years, what they’ll look like, what job they’ll have, how many babies they’re going to produce, etc…
When we go to school and start meeting other kids, sometimes we get a boyfriend or a girlfriend. Sometimes your age, a lack of maturity, or naivety play a part in making us think we’re in love at a very young age. Nothing I can say to my kids will ever truly make them understand that, and that’s OK. My job as a parent is to guide them by example, teach them right from wrong, and trust that they will make good choices along the way.
The next kind of love I want to talk about is the grown-up kind. The kind of love that makes you willing to do almost anything, sacrifice almost anything, to ensure their happiness in life. This kind of love unfortunately doesn’t reach every soul. Life happens, death happens, and sadly but truly sometimes love ends because of that. Temptation is a word I wished didn’t exist, because without it I’m sure a lot more “love” would last a little longer.
Grown-up love is pretty cool. By the time you fall in love the grown-up way, you’re usually mature enough to realize it. You hope/assume that the other individual in the mix is mature enough to realize it as well. Now, you guys know I’ve been divorced from my older kid’s mother for almost eleven years now. We got married pretty young, and if either one of us knew what grown-up love was yet, it sure wasn’t apparent. By the time either of us figured that part out of life, we had long since parted ways.
When I met the woman I’m with now, I had no idea that over eight years later we’d still be acquaintances, let alone be husband and wife. Sometimes it’s like that. When I used to tell the story of meeting her, I used to say it playfully, and I got into way too many details. Nobody wanted to hear that. Not for real. Maybe they did kind of want to hear that, because they hadn’t found that grown-up love yet, and they think that I hadn’t either.
Somewhere along this road of life I’ve been traveling these past thirty-five years, I found her. I found my grown-up love. She is amazing. I really do love her. Not only would I do almost anything, or sacrifice almost anything to ensure her happiness in life, I made a vow to her a long time ago to love her, to cherish her, in sickness and in health. I meant it.
A couple of years ago, my wife and I separated. We spent a lot of time apart from each other, and we ended up filing for a divorce. Being divorced is not the end of the world. However, when you love someone…like really love someone, it’s pretty hard to forget. There were many days I would literally have tears in my eyes almost the entire drive home after dropping our children off to her for the night. However, I wasn’t the only one who had fallen into that grown-up love. Luckily, she had too.
Realizing that we still loved each other after every argument, after every disagreement, after every hurt word said—was one of the happiest feelings I had in a very long time. I started asking her to “hang out” with the kids and I for lunch, or the movies. I thought I was being slick, and honestly not very sure in myself if my plan was even going to work. Winning your wife back is hard work people. It’s not like you can just divorce someone, act like you don’t care about them anymore, because they started acting like they didn’t care about you anymore, and then think they’ll just come running back into your arms like nothing happened. That’s not how life works, and that’s definitely not how love works.
Love is earned. Period. You earn love, or you don’t. You prove yourself, or you don’t. You be the man/woman he/she needs you to be for you and the family, or you don’t. You put in the time, or you don’t. You put in the effort, or you don’t. You make them feel special, or you don’t. You help them succeed, or you don’t. You become one entity, or you don’t. You make a pact, you raise a family, and you love each other the way you want to be loved—or you don’t.
My wife is beautiful. She is smart. She has a very dismissing attitude towards some people, and she does not take kindly to people who pry too deep into our life. Our lives have been exposed through this blog, and through our “BaileyLiving” YouTube Channel many years now. She can sing very well, and she can cop a mean attitude even better. She loves our children we have made together, and more importantly, she loves my oldest two daughters just as much. She is an excellent mom, my very best friend that I’ve ever had, and I grown-up love her.
I hadn’t truly realized how much I meant to her until she proposed to me. Yes, you read that right. She proposed to me the second time around. She sang to me, she was sincere with me, and I absolutely loved the proposal. She started working on wedding arrangements almost immediately. I swear, it was like a day or two later, and she had already planned the entire thing. Just typing this out right now makes me smile so big thinking back to her voice on the phone telling me all about it while I drove home from work one night.
November 20th, 2014 I married my best friend again. There wasn’t a lot of people there. There wasn’t a lot of hoopla about the event. We went to Las Vegas, we saw friends and family, and we got married. When we came home, life is just life now. It seems a lot better now. I like looking down at my ring on my finger. I look at it a lot and feel a sense of relief come over me.
Love fixed my broken family, and made me feel whole again. I freaking love that!