These days it seems like love is such a hard thing to keep. I mean, everywhere you look someone is falling out of love or being left behind by the person they loved. It’s like every time you blink, another relationship has ended. Which begs the question: does love have an expiration date?
Is there some kind of unforeseen internal clock that decides how long it lasts? When you wake up next to the person you’ve spent days and weeks and months on end with and don’t feel a thing, has love expired? Is there a deeper connection between the length of a relationship and an individual’s lifespan? How can we calculate how long the feeling of love will last? How do we know when to leave before we’re left? How can we make love last longer if we have no clue as to how love works?
Love is such a controversial topic. Love is a word with many definitions. Love is a feeling, an action, a decision, a curse, a blessing; love is a lot of things. Love is not simple. Love is not easy to understand, it is not easy to find, and it is not easy to keep. But it is necessary, and it is worthwhile.
When love begins, you feel butterflies in your stomach. You want to run slow motion through a field of wildflowers, hair flowing in the wind, Taylor Swift playing softly in the background.
When love ends, you want to shrink into yourself. You want to cry, you want to know why and how. But what if love is just meant to be that way? What if every love has an expiration date, pre-stamped into its place in your heart, and when it’s finally time, it’s time’s up?
What if love is predetermined by a force we haven’t yet discovered? Or maybe it’s calculated based on your upbringing. What if love is truly out of our control? And what if one day we find a way to make love last longer? Like our grandparents and their grandparents before them? What if love could never end?
What if love was controllable and foreseeable and everything our elementary school teachers taught us from their pre-naptime storybooks?
What even is love?