The Way That I Love

My love is chaotic. It’s a wild, passionate tangle. That tumbling, swooping delight that fills me to the brim and explodes from my fingertips. It’s both of us talking at once, filling the space between us with excitement and laughter and short, sharp bursts of outrage. It’s the fact that after six years, my heart still thumps when he walks through the door. It’s being dragged on tiny adventures when I’d rather lie in bed and cry. It’s pouting and thrashing and lashing out and having someone gently respond, “I love you”.

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My love is quiet. It’s a hand gently covering mine as I stare distractedly out of the window. The kiss at the base of my neck as the cup is placed by my side. It’s slow dancing in a freezing square, wearing twenty layers of clothing It’s noses bumping together, hands intertwining. It’s the sound of a page being turned. It’s a body pressed against mine under the cold sheets, pale light trickling beneath the blinds. It’s a whispered secret. And fingers in my hair. It’s pancakes. And soda bread. It’s the scent of jasmine. It’s the knowledge that in all my imperfection, I am enough. And that wherever he is, that’s my home. It’s the smile that tugs at the edge of his mouth when we run out things to say. It’s the perfect circle of freckles on his shoulder. And the kisses that fall like rain.

Love is my dad saying to me, “I’m so proud of you”. Love is dancing like my mum. It’s tearing across a beach with my sister on my back. The sound of ice clinking in a glass. It’s eating chips in our car by the seaside, because it’s too cold to do it outside. It’s old home movies. And terrible, terrible jokes. It’s telling my best friend that I love her, and wondering why I didn’t say it sooner. It’s butterscotch Angel Delight. And strawberry daquiris. And white irises. And the hot, bitter smell of gunpowder at New Years.

Love is my sister running across the playground towards me. It’s the corner of the kitchen where my brother and I learned to be friends. It’s Practical Magic. It’s the Emperor’s New Groove. It’s red lipstick. It’s my granny eating cake mix straight from the bowl. It’s ordering two bottles of wine on a school night because you don’t want to stop talking. It’s the exclamation, “I know exactly what you mean”. Love is realising that it’s not too late. That you still have time. That all you have to do is reach out a hand. It’s lying on the ground, staring up at a sky full of stars.

My love is the crinkles in my eyes when I laugh. My love is the way I tuck my hair behind my ear. And the way I can read until I’m drunk on words. And singing in the shower. My love is the way that I cry when I’m happy. My love is insignificant. My love is undignified. My love is beautiful.

And because of my love, my life is good.

Happy Valentines Day.

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