Love is like that--quick-witted, a sudden and completely unexpected burst of inspiration. Even before you know you're in love, you're in love. When you look backwards, it's obvious. But when you're in the actual moment, you're lost. Lost in the sights and sounds, the smiles and sighs--all the minutiae, the fine detail that you will remember for a lifetime. Remember because, of course, you're in love. Even if you weren't yet aware of your own feelings, those feelings were still running in the background--algorithms of the soul, if you will.
The night before, the booth in the corner of the restaurant is just a booth in an otherwise empty corner. But after you meet the person who is to become your person, that booth is no longer just a booth. It's the place where love began. You never pass it again and not think about the moment you fell from Earth into heaven. Love is perhaps the only thing that allows humans to defy gravity without harming the environment, or, ourselves.
Even food is part of that first memory. What you were eating, drinking...and, what you weren't. Maybe you ordered the Thai curry dish. And, he did, too. Sitting behind you, in that booth in the corner--the one you'll remember for the rest of your life. You turned round and said, "Did you just order the same thing I'm eating?" He looked at you the way no one else ever had (nor ever will...) and then, then he smiled. A shy smile. A smile you'll see in your dreams for months, perhaps years thereafter. Though you're still technically strangers, an invisible string has tightened between you. And, you know just then that no matter how many miles may separate you in future, you'll never really be apart.
You'll remember, too, that moment when you thought yourself complete until the person who becomes your person enters your world. That's when you realized that though complete, you weren't quite whole. You never thought you needed anyone or anything to be happy. You felt confident, competent, capable. Until, one day, you simply turned around. It was that quick. That easy. Pure moments always are.
A pure moment is a moment without hesitation. A moment where there was no predisposed thinking. You were just part of the flow and moved with the tides of Destiny. That's usually when Destiny opens the door to your future. Why? Because you were being your authentic self. In every other meeting or encounter, we have agendas, plans. But in a natural moment that evolves between two souls who have never met before, and had no idea that moment was even possible (let alone probable), you are truly you. And, if someone falls in love with you when you are truly you, that's the person you keep. The one who notices your details and doesn't judge you but instead, sees you as courageous. Brave. And beautiful, inside and out.
No one knows what the future may hold, but when you're in love, you know that no matter what happens, that pure moment, and the pure emotion that followed, is your miracle. You experienced something real. Something beyond words. Memory holds the images, sounds, touches, and tastes you will never not miss. That's when fear can wriggle into the dark peripheries of your mind. The "what ifs" creep around on stilted thoughts that are hard to reach without undertaking mental acrobatics. But even with the circus of emotions that come up after you fall in love, you're still in love. And, if you were honest with yourself, you'd be able to admit that you'd dive into the deep end tomorrow if the person who is your person asks.
Every summer, I take daily swims that last for hours upon hours off the coast of Cape Cod. Mink whales, dolphins, seals, and yes, even sharks swim along side me. No wet suit. Just a bikini. In I go, day after day. Fisherman see me swimming and warn that I'm "too far out." But I feel safest when furthest from the shore. The deeper, the better. Perhaps it's because it, too, is a pure moment--like falling in love. Me and the sea. Nothing else matters. If it's a windy day, it takes all I have not to succumb to the beating of the waves. Yet, I know I'll make it to shore, even if it takes me longer. I think love is like that--like swimming in deep waters. You don't always know what's under the surface, but its worth the risks. Because, frankly, there is no feeling quite like being in the sea. You're free. At peace. Happy. Others may think you mad, but you know you're safer than they are amidst the crowds of sociopaths and narcissists, deadly disease lurking in the shadow of every fickle freckle.
Indeed, love is a wide-open ocean full of possibilities. You're not so much falling as you are floating, cradled by the waves that can carry you to distant shores. Your skin will become stained with sunshine and salt. Your hair will fade. But, you'll never be alone again. Your freedom increases exponentially when properly paired. You can be anything, go anywhere. There's a kind of confidence that comes with love that reminds me of the safety of water--it holds you up. You become buoyant and can float over hardships and obstacles without a second thought.
Everyone deserves the kind of love that lifts you up and makes you feel safe. The kind of love that would go to extraordinary lengths just to hold you for a few hours. The kind that says upon seeing you, "I don't know where to start...I just want to kiss you all over," then proceeds to do just that. Love walks you to your car and opens your door, helping you inside. Love cares that you made it to your destination. Love gets angry on your behalf when something unfair happens. Love believes in you so much, it looks for you...everywhere. Even in words that you scribble in a notebook before translating them to an electronic page:
On the day we met, you smiled at me
And I haven't stopped smiling since
Even when frightened by phantoms of future's past
I somehow know it will (one day) be okay
Because, in time,
We will find our way
Like in that fateful moment
When you walked by
And I, I took the road less traveled by
Destiny only happens to those with the strength to see it through
You believe we were destined
Though easier to deny
I. Do. Too.