The night sky was pale.
There was actually still a little bit of drizzle – probably remnants of this morning’s rain. I could see the faint drops bathing in the blare lights coming from the runway. I was watching them through the tiny window of our aircraft.
The plane took off, finally. I was expecting heavy turbulence throughout the flight. Much turbulence there was indeed, but not on the plane. Much of it was inside my head.
I recently read a book about well, love. It troubled me a little that all the novels and movies these days never really tell you the entire thing about love. They just get one chunk of it, put it up on screens or make paperbacks out of it, and leave out the rest of the stuff that makes it what it is entirely. I guess that’s why people fall in love for the wrong reasons. I guess at one point I did too. All those novels and movies tend to leave out the crucial parts, those exact phases and faces of love that we cannot possibly afford to be ignorant about. Or, rather we can, but at our own expense.
“Love is a battle,” I once read somewhere. And I couldn’t dare agree more. But somehow this great, implacable battle has been so falsely reduced to the pursuit of a lad for a gal and/or vice versa. Sure there is some battle there, but it’s not always about the big, grand, gestures that you get to buy from shops for a few hundred bucks, not always about the kind of thing you get to shout out to the public. It’s not always about the right words to say. It’s not always fresh and exciting and new and innocent –it’s not always going to feel like it’s worth it.
The battle that we fight in love is not meagrely contained in The Chase. The real battle begins when you start to come across a huge pill that feels almost impossible to swallow, a kind of pill so huge that it cannot possibly be downed in a single gulp. The real battle begins when you get too familiar with each other’s idiosyncrasies, and they become annoying rather than interesting, and along with it comes the need to forgive and see the best in that person always, continually, even if the circumstances do not seem to permit it. The real battles are mostly held in silence, in secret, and sometimes in between tears.
The real battle of love is the battle to stay in love.
And just as it is with all other battles, there’s going to be scars and pain and chaos. Just as it is with all other battles, you’re going to have to win some, and lose some. Just as it is with all other battles, you will need someone and something other than yourself to keep fighting.
And there is a kind of quiet strength, a kind of Grace that is inexplicable but undeniably real that helps you and makes you – no matter how many times you face defeat – never face surrender.