Healthy love is quiet.
It’s not the passion of meeting someone new, or the triumph of the first time you kiss. Healthy love is sipping coffee on a Sunday afternoon with a person you have known for many years, watching the sun slant over their face and still admiring each feature and flaw that makes it up. Healthy love is soft and unassuming, just as often as it is bold and daring. It demands no recognition. It requires no bells and whistles.
Healthy love is challenging.
It doesn’t allow you to keep choosing your bratty behaviors or to indulge yourself in lofty delusions. Healthy love brings you down to earth. It causes you to confront your childish tendencies. It encourages you to grow and change. Healthy love asks you to be better, because it knows that you can be. Because it brings out the best, not the worst, in you.
Healthy love is eye-opening.
It makes you see things from a brand-new perspective, makes you reconsider what you thought you knew. Healthy love challenges the painful perceptions you have held about yourself for too long – it forces you to reconsider yourself and others in a more compassionate way. It breaks down walls that you didn’t realize you’d constructed. It inspires you to keep them down for good.
Healthy love is unglamorous.
It’s conversations that you do not want to have, it’s compromises that you never thought you’d make. It’s putting someone else’s needs ahead of your own in a way you didn’t think you ever would, but also in a way that you’re surprised to find you want to. Healthy love brings you places you may never have wanted to go, but you may just be surprised to find yourself acclimatizing nicely to upon arrival. You may be surprised by the kind of love you never knew you needed all along.
Healthy love is dynamic.
It is enthralling and romantic one day, trying and agonizing the next. It is not a static state, it’s not a train station you can get off at and remain. Healthy love grows up with you; it rides the waves of your challenges and triumphs. It is blazing when the thing you need is courage, it is timid when acceptance is required. Healthy love grows and changes just as much as you do; it adapts to fit the kind of love you need.
Healthy love is peaceful.
It’s the quiet undercurrent to everything, the always-knowing someone has your back. It’s going into every battle with an army. It’s the always-knowing that you’re not alone.
Healthy love is not the passionate, all-consuming fire that we all love to read and write about with fervor; it’s the coals that burn on quietly for years.
And the people who’re committed to keep tending to them.
The ones who know fires only die if you let them.