To love requires vulnerability. Patiently stripping yourself of your well protected persona before the person you love while simultaneously relinquishing control of how you want to be perceived. We have a tendency to maintain a half true incomplete view of our partner and only through courageousness of both partners can the beauty of vulnerability commence. This allows your partner to become fully human in front of you. Many hide behind their ego unconsciously retreating further from love. When the ego interferes with the journey between two lovers their interaction becomes a dance of two halves restricted from diving into the depths of the experience. A person of great reverence and gratitude must have uttered the first I love you. Making the vulnerable attempt to tell their partner that something deep within the heart , beats and stirs elevating their spirit at the sight of them. Like a child learning the world gentleness and reciprocity is what the heart hopes for during this period of aliveness.

The more I mature, my understanding of love evolves into what Bell Hook’s defines as, “The nurturance of ones own or another spirit”. It becomes a way of letting someone know I have trust in them and I have faith that this knowledge will bring a certain attentive gentleness to their behavior. Both partners make the long patient attempt to strip down before one another and see their partner as they really are without falling into the ego’s tendency of seeing a innocently narcisistic projection. So many partnerships have dissolved because of this inability to look at your partner objectively. I have found myself spending many nights awake working to re-figure the pink mosaic lens I once trust the night before. The inability to reconfigure your view of yourself and work towards some objectivity only deepens the distance from your partner.

If we do not give the world room to fail us, elevate us, drop us or touch us we can never grow. My trouble as many have suffered and are suffering is the feeling of abandonment. The fear of making the sojourn of life as we all must make it, alone. Our responsibility, that is the basis of our freedom, constitutes the ability to stand by yourself while knowing you are connected and interwoven into all the lives happening around you. Unable to meet this requirement in this hour develops into a paralysis or an inability to love and reveal yourself before another person. It is paradoxical to think you have to make yourself susceptible to be wounded in order to enter into the core of another person. We are all interwoven into each others live being moved by one another, being intimate with your emotions gives you the power to connect.

For many of us all of our attempts to love have ultimately revealed something buried within us that we would rather not remember. Often times this leads to very elaborate and illusory attempts to prevent ourselves from being damaged or even facing something we hoped to forget. These revelations require faith and empathy to move through the pain to a understanding that you are not condemned to your failures, forever trapped in that moment. One of the greatest things I was told was, “ We got time”. Which remains very cathartic for me because many people are trapped in different fears of time or death. The young want their riches this Friday, and if Friday comes without their riches despair swarms them. I have seen people in their 30s and 40s get anxious at the sight of a clock believing it’ll only be a moment before all possibility of the American dream collapses. Then you see the group that sits impatiently jaded and distrustful of all life waiting on death to meet them.

If you carve anything from these experiences, you do what is required of all lovers, dive to the depths of your soul and pull out faith. Faith that your silence will be heard, your stuttering understood and your heart comforted. Vulnerability helps you become empathetic of your emotions, which helps your partner trust we can understand and forgive their shortcomings. We all are sensitive and fragile holding ourselves together in various ways. Making yourself susceptible to being hurt or being lifted, opens the door to loving the core of another person. I think this makes the endeavor worth it, even if that means everything you once knew on Saturday must be torn down for the information coming in on Sunday. We often reorient ourselves during pain by distracting ourselves with duty or illusions, but to love it requires you to move through everything terrifying taking what you can from the experience. After all, “We got time”.