She’s the one. She’s the only one. There won’t be another. She’s it. I won…I found her. There won’t ever be another person who will ever have this place in me. She’s the one. She is the only person who has ever deserved the words…she is the only one to ever hear them. They sound so simple but the truth is that they are deeper than a lifetime will ever allow me to explore. What are they you ask? It’s the words…I love you.
Sometime during my high school years I made a decision. After hearing so many of my classmates casually throw the phrase “I love you” around, I decided I was going to try and do something different. I couldn’t understand how someone could profess undying love to someone, yet by time lunch rolled around there was already trouble in paradise, and by school’s end the love affair was over. It seemed to me that telling someone you loved them had to mean something more. There had to be more to love than mutual attraction.
With my theory in hand I made a decision. I would never say the words I love you to someone until I really meant them. I love you was not going to be a relational catch phrase to me. It was going to have depth or I didn’t want anything to do with it.
I image that some of you might think me naive to have made such a stand. Maybe it was. I was young and didn’t have a lot of experience with girls, but I knew something deep in my heart; I wanted to find out what love was and I wanted to know what it meant to really love someone.
The journey to finding the answers to my questions would require writing a book, but let me leave it at this… a few days from now I will celebrate a very important day in my life. March 13th will mark the day that I stood in front of friends and family and pledged my life to the girl who would become my wife.
Those twenty years have been the most important years of my life. They are the years I grew up and became a man. I found out what it took to keep a job even if I didn’t like it. I found out that parenting is not a science but a constant changing experience that I would never want to do alone. I found out that life can really throw you some curve balls. Most of all I found out how glad I was to have found a partner to live out my adventure with me. The only girl I have ever spoken the words “I love you” to, I married.
Speaking the words has only been half the story. The other half has been finding someone who would receive those words and return them. These past twenty years I have been blessed to have this incredible woman stand beside me. She has watched me grow older, she has watched me make mistakes, she has watched me laugh and cry and in all of it she has showed me over and over why I was right to hold my “I love you” for the right person.
Love is not a cheap emotion. No matter how much the world around us drags love down to some cheap feeling. When you find the real thing you understand how precious it is. How can a man put into words what it means to have someone love them after they really get to know them and they don’t have to love them, yet still do?
Love is a bond that is found in your soul. It is the force that God created the universe from. It is the air that you breathe when life gets complicated. It is the feeling you get when you kiss your wife goodnight knowing she will be beside you until the morning brings a new day. Love is about belonging. It’s about having your person. The one who gets you. The one who still laughs at your jokes. The one who looks in your face and doesn’t see the gray or wrinkles but sees something that so often you can’t even see in yourself.
I saved my “I love you” for one. She’s it! I found her. It’s been twenty years and I will always be so grateful that I waited to find the real thing.
Don’t settle. Don’t cheapen. Don’t give up. I love you big baby…