I told someone new that I love them yesterday.And like the chaotic breeziness outside, I feel just a little bit more alive today.I walk with just an extra spring in my step.Because inasmuch as I love them, I am loved.The knowledge is helpful, but the security is revolutionary.If Pops who was sitting abandoned like on the Fulton mall knew he was loved.What would it do?I mean, really knew it, and felt it, and was able to receive it and express it.
The interesting thing is that I am not “in love.”This isn’t a passing fascination or physical fancy.It isn’t a Christian “brotherly love” because we’re one in the faith, we’re not.I waited a year to say that to him.Because I was afraid of admitting that I loved him. Because I was afraid he’d leave. That it was a fascination and he’d get bored and leave, or that when I became not so pretty he’d move on to another girl.He did move onto another girl, but then he came to dinner with me and told me about it.We finally fought a month ago and when we were able to resolve it and still be friends, I knew the secret that I carried in my heart had no reason to hide there anymore.He should know, he ought to hear it.No sense in hoarding.In fact, the reality of the shortness of life, he ought to know, I must say it.The deepest regret I can imagine- would be someone passing out of your life and you never saying that you loved them, if you so did.To live with the agony of wonderment, did they ever know, really know?I wanted to erase the question. But it opens up the vulnerability.I say so- what if they don’t? There’s my heart lying in the gutter of an abandoned dead end street.What’s worse: the secret of true feeling locked up in the vault of your heart, or something left raw and exposed in public.I’d venture to say, letting the word get out.If it’s kept locked up, it can only eat away at your heart, emotions, mind and soul.It affects only you, what was meant to be a sweet fragrance becomes a sickness, like acid eating the stomach. But put out there, to be taken or rejected, that opens the exhilaration of risk, excitement for the adventure of life.It puts you out of control, releasing the façade we love to play, putting down one of our masks for a brief moment.
I don’t often get too angry. It’s not really a very good thing. Let me say that again, its not a good thing. I feel that anger is just as strong as an emotion and action as love. However, we downplay anger because it gets abused so easily, what we don’t recognize is that we do the same with love, becomes manipulation. I am working on getting angry more often. What is worthy of strong emotion, but not love? What is unjust? What makes me cry out “that is just Not Right!” If I could learn to word and use my anger better, I think that I would bring a fresh style of communication, become a more balanced individual and be able to bring a genuine honesty to the table of collaboration.
In the past two years, I can only think of 2 times where I was angry with another individual. I expressed it verbally and there was reconciliation. But I was provoked. I’m tired of reactive anger, especially when it is totally justified. I am ready for some pro-active anger, fleshed out not to bring up immediate reconciliation, but geared to draw attention to an untended wound, to attract action to an untidy garbage dump. Wouldn’t it be more effective to slice where it hurts using full negative emotion expressed in a healthy way, instead of sugar-coating a PC response and waiting for an Oprah story?
Nobody wants to get angry anymore because there are supposed to be no absolutes. If there is no absolutes, then what works for you, works, and I have no justified response in anger. Tolerance is the name of the game. Passive. Let’s all just hold our sweaty palms together and sing Kum-by-ya. Until we get run over by a tank… That is why belief in absolute truth is fundamental to being able to express genuine love and appropriate anger. Maybe that is why we’re suppressing our natural emotions and find them coming out in addictions and malice. Own up: you love well, you hate well. How about we start defining those things more precisely?
PS- I knew one of those individuals a year before that fight. I told them straight up “I’m angry with you” and ironically, it wasn’t until a month thereafter that I was able to tell them for the first time “i love you.” Somehow, it was one of the more meaningful exchanges.