Some of us are just that way. It’s all feelings, hard, fast, and simple. We give out passes like raffle tickets, handing them out to any and everyone. We leave the gate to our hearts open. Learn a secret, ask for them all, and be given them gladly. It is simply not glass and china, meant to sit on a counter and be polished and cleaned. Instead, ours is rubbed and worn and has faded bleach spots and callouses, and frayed corners. Ours gets tossed around, given out, shared and cuddled, often shredded and handed back. Love for us is friendship and platonic and romantic and family and something deeper than all of that together. And those of us that feel it too much, too early, and too easy sometimes fail miserably at convincing the ones we care for that it is there.
My attempt in high school was always bringing a jacket and giving it to the kid who didn’t have one when we went outside and making jokes about how I was hot-natured anyway, even if that meant I couldn’t feel my hands.
Now it is “Do you need anything?”, “Text me when you get home”, and “I’ve got it”. It’s money I don’t have to spend sent to someone I know needs a pick-me-up. It’s driving 30 minutes out of my way for a conversation. It’s remembering things and sometimes forgetting them, knowing when to keep secrets and keeping them so well hidden even dreams aren’t sure what I know.
Sometimes love for us is harder. Sometimes it is giving up a movie night for work because no one works alone. Sometimes it’s traveling 3 hours for no reason except because the dentist is scary and they need someone. Sometimes it’s staying up all night watching the door because they can’t sleep, even though you have a test tomorrow.
Sometimes it is looking up at an angry patient in a mental illness-induced rage and putting yourself between him and the next person, even knowing exactly what is going to happen. Sometimes it is making yourself uncomfortable so you will stay up when you know they need you to be there. Sometimes it’s little pieces they don’t need to know just to make things easier. Often for me, it’s loyalty. Following directions, orders and absolutely taking the heavy side if I can.
I am not much good at feelings in the way that people expect them to be handled. All out in the open and simplistic like movies make them out to be. One week I probably wouldn’t tell you hello and the next I would put myself into a fight for you with absolutely no in-between. I am not one for grand gestures and eloquent speeches made from front lawns to remind you of the place that you have somehow carved for yourself in my life.
For folks like me, our love is quiet.