Personal lessons on love

Friday the 13th is a good day to talk about love, right? Right?! RIGHT??!!!

With my long history of depression and the #sadboi songs I write, I’m always a little caught off guard when asked for life advice. I immediately think of the times I was barely holding it together (or, you know, having a full-on breakdown in a friend’s kitchen or in front of a therapist) and wonder what I could possibly help another person with.

Of course, there’s a twofold answer in there: 1. Sometimes people just need to be heard, and in general, I am a pretty good listener, and 2. Sometimes going through experiences and being vulnerable to discuss them can let others know that they’re not alone in what they’re going through.

So in thinking about the concept of the word “love” – and I’m well aware that trying to sum that up in a blog post is inherently going to leave out so many important aspects, so bear with me – there are a few thoughts and lessons I’ve had, especially on my current journey.

One of the main ones is this: Not everyone who says they love you actually does.

Now look, I’m not out here calling people liars. Lying involves malice, and I’m not trying to judge a person’s intent here. Maybe they thought they loved you. Maybe they genuinely wanted to love you. But the lesson I’ve learned over the years is that love comes from the actions, not just the words. I even included an aspect of this in one of my songs.

“An Empty Phrase” from my Carry the Wounds album has the lyrics:

But now I know…
Not to take it at face value
I ignored your actions in favor of your words

(Side note: That song starts out with “‘I want you in my life’ is just another empty phrase…” So… uh… please never tell me “I want you in my life.” Literally everyone who has ever said that to me is either not in my life at all or currently at the outskirts of it. I dunno… the phrase just feels a bit cursed at this point [LOL? Shrug emoji?])

OK, back to the main point: love and actions. In the book The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz, he says:

“If others say one thing, but do another, you are lying to yourself if you don’t listen to their actions.”

Words are great. Words are important. Words can affirm. Words can encourage. Words have power. In fact, the first agreement in that book is “be impeccable with your word” and he writes, “Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love.” Some people’s love language is Words of Affirmation.

But are the words followed by actions? And if the actions and the words don’t match… well… look at the actions. I firmly believe that truth is seen in the actions.

Another aspect that I will absolutely not do a deep dive into for this post is love vs. attachment. It’s an interesting subject to examine, and one in which I am personally examining and thinking about. I’ve heard Kyle Cease talk about this in some of his YouTube videos, and I remember him bringing up some popular love songs that, if you took away the music and had a date say those words to you at dinner, they’d be kind of creepy. He says that what we think of as “love” much of the time is actually “attachment.” It’s an interesting subject to delve into.

Anyway… I think I’ll stop here. This is one of those posts where I just needed to get my thoughts out, so if you made it this far: thank you. Thank you for reading, caring, supporting, listening, watching, and encouraging me. It’s greatly appreciated. Find the beauty in the world. Much love.

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