People always tell you that saying “I love you” is very important. I don’t disagree with that. But, I believe showing love is just as important. Sometimes in life we become so busy and self absorbed, that we think people around us should “know” that we love them. We then use that as a way to make ourselves feel better when deep down we know we have not shown love. The reality is, showing love is just as important as saying it. So, think about those around you and how you have shown love or been shown love.
I was about 16 years old when I met my husband for the first time. Unlike the movie scenes, it was not love at first sight for either of us. In fact, it was immediate disdain. He struck me as an arrogant know-it-all that looked down on “unchurched” people. I struck him (which I later found out) as a rude, outspoken tomboy, incapable of feeling anything emotionally for anyone unrelated to me by blood. Needless to say, there were no butterflies and rainbows. Despite our initial impressions, we somehow developed a friendship that evolved into a very intense dating relationship.
Given that we were young, intelligent, and lovestruck, you would expect lots of sex, kissing, or something…right? WELL, not so much. But, that was the beautiful thing about our relationship. We found ourselves intrigued with each other. We spent most nights on the phone discussing books like “To Kill A Mocking Bird” or debating legislation that should be passed…pretty sexy stuff right. He would always tell me how beautiful I was, but it seemed like a secondary issue to him. Now, please don’t think this hormonal teenage boy was a saint, because he did like to get a little grabby with the hands. But, I was always intrigued with his amazing self-restraint. I was also intrigued by his ability to literally look at me for hours, as if he was seeing his dream woman for the very first time.
One night when his parents were out of town, he invited me to stay the weekend at his house. I remember thinking, “finally, he is going to try and get some…but he is going to be in for a rude awaking.” I had decided I would let him think he would get some action…and then say no when he was good and ready to go. Stupid and cruel I know, but we were young and dumb. So, I happily packed my bags and arrived at his house at 7pm on a Friday evening. He quickly greeted me with a kiss and that smile I love so much. He then took my bags and whisked me off into the guest bedroom. I remember looking around the room and seeing the covers already pulled back on the bed in the guest bedroom. I also noticed a open jar of something on the night stand next to the bed. He leaned forward and whispered “go ahead and get comfortable under the covers, I will be right back.” So, I playfully jumped into the bed and undressed under the covers. I quickly opened my bag and grabbed a sports bra and hooping shorts to put on…because that’s how I rolled. He slowly walked back into the room wearing a tank and hooping shorts also. He softly pulled the covers back, crawled in bed next to me, and grabbed the open jar off the dresser. He then softly kissed me behind my ear and said “I have been waiting all week for this. Now, lay back, relax, and let me rub your joints down with Bengay.” THAT was the moment I realized that he was a keeper. I was so used to people admiring my thin frame or men seeing my body in a sexual way that the scenario unfolding right in front of me didn’t seem possible. When he would stare at me in awe for hours, I always assumed he did it because he wanted my body and was thinking about sleeping with me. But, at that moment, on that Friday evening alone in the dark, I realized that yes, he did in fact want my body. But, unlike others around me, he simply wanted to comfort my body. It was that tenderness and selflessness that made me fall deep in love.
As it turns out, we all need someone that we can lean on. That one person that sees the brokenness when the world sees strength. That person that is able to be your strength when you have none left. Well, HE is mine and he DEFINITELY wants this body!