As I have reiterated many times before, you have a lot of time to think when you work on a ship. Also, you have loads of extra time if you are a performer. I’ve read 3 books in a couple weeks and watched a TON of chick flicks. Too many to name. So naturally, I can’t help but be very intrigued by true love and the way that society and the media “romanticizes” it. Love is on my brain. And readers, I need your help– because I want your feedback. When I was a teenager, I truly believed that there was someone for everyone out there. One person– not two, not three, not fifteen. As I got older, I got exposed to marriages not working out, couples fighting, ugly break ups at school, toxic relationships, and platonic relationships. I saw couples at dinner together barely talking to one another and I heard stories of men and women playing games with one another. Now– that doesn’t mean that I haven’t believed in or seen real love. It’s just that when I think about the couples that I personally know in my life that exemplify that kind of passionate relationship– I can only count about 5 on one hand. And that makes me sad. HOWEVER– It’s not all negative. I see all the other examples of love as well. On the other side, I do often see couples dancing at the bar, holding hands along the ship, reading books together, going for a run together, taking a yoga or cooking class together, and praying together. I see couples talking endlessly at dinner, watching shows together, gazing into each other’s eyes on the bow. I get to study people on a daily basis doing this job. I see them and talk to them at all hours of the day– new passengers, big families, newlyweds, elders who have been married for 50 or 60 years, widows, widowers, teenagers. I see examples of love everywhere.
I began to make it a habit to ask some of the older couples on the Maasdam how long they have been married and what their secrets were to a happy marriage. A lot of the men gave the age old biased answer, “Well if my wife is happy, I’m happy.” One woman said, “Make sure the man loves you more than you love him,” (which I had a hard time stomaching– shouldn’t love be equal?) Others answers were, “Well we do our own hobbies and have our own passions, we spend time apart so we can cherish time together,” and my favorite answer of all was “I love her, thats why it lasts. I’m the luckiest man alive.” That last one was the constant answer my (recently passed) grandfather Pops gave when I asked him how he made it work with Grandy. Granted they fought a bit, Pops always gave the same answer, “She’s my sweetheart, I am so fortunate, and I just want more time with her.”
A simple thought, powerful and indefinite– that kind of love. Why don’t I see more of it though? It baffles me and makes me sad when I watch a movie or read a romantic book and then feel the disappointment when it ends that real life isn’t like that. That “movie love” isn’t real. Why can’t it be real? Why do people lose the passion and desire and fire? What is the secret for those of you who feel like you haven’t lost the fire? For me, I’ve always thought spirituality has a huge role in a relationship. If two people are united under God, they are always striving for love, and the love will always be powertful. But for others with different beliefs, I wonder how they feel about love. My question for you single and taken and married and divorced readers is this: DO YOU BELIEVE IN LOVE? Real love. Over the moon love. Aching love. Sacrificial Love. What about love at first sight? DO you believe that there is one person for all of us? A soulmate? And for those of you who have it nailed down and are experiencing it…. share with me the feeling of being with that person.
This is an extremely personal blog post for me, but I’ve been dying to discuss this with friends and family (all of whom are miles away due to my job). I think all of us want more than anything to be able to experience that LIFETIME love. Where you don’t have to hold back. When you can POUR your emotions out there and feel nothing but love in return. Who doesn’t desire that? I remain positive in my search for answers and how the greatest marriages and unions in this world make it work. Don’t assume I’m ready for marriage or crazy commitment– I’m not. But I am ravished by the idea of love and what it does to humans. It’s a fascinating thing. Speaking of love, I LOVE ALL OF YOU for taking time to read this and share with me. Don’t hesitate to comment or message me on the blog or on facebook. Share what love means to you.
Goodbye for now,