Virginia Beach portrait and lifestyle photographer specializing in comfortable portraits and candids
What is love? What does it mean to love someone? To be IN love with someone? Do I love them like I love my best friend? Or my family? Or like I love horses? While I was dating Chad, I actually researched love. I mean, if I’m going to dabble in it, I may as well know what I’m getting myself into, right? Well, even though I had used the phrase with past boyfriends, I learned I didn’t want to use it with Chad. Here’s why.
I didn’t want to say I LOVE YOU to Chad until I could 1] know what I mean, and 2] mean it. While we were dating, I did really care for Chad. I considered his feelings and our relationship in most of my decisions. He was important to me. On the other hand, daddy hadn’t given me away yet – daddy was still my man. I was still obeying my parents. To say I LOVE YOU meant something different. The kind of love I wanted to have with Chad was AGAPE. Sacrificial love. Love that puts that person above all other persons. Agape love is better shown than said, and I definitely couldn’t show it. Yes, we were committed in the sense that we were an exclusive couple. But the level of commitment in terms of LOVE was not there. Marriage was not there. Marriage is where God commands us to love with Agape love. “Husbands, LOVE your wives [as Christ love the Church…]” God calls for that love only in deep commitment. Jesus was deeply committed to his “bride,” the church, when He died, displaying his love, for it…And so that is why I felt I couldn’t say I love you.
In place of that, we said, “I like you.”
It was cute, light hearted, and I knew I was being honest about it. I could have said, “This is what I mean when I say I love you.” Clarified it. Been done and gotten on with saying those three little words. We just chose to wait. Until the day we got engaged. That was the first time we said, “I love you” to each other, and it was SO meaningful. Engagement was a big deal to me because I knew I had taken a step into deeper commitment. I was now thinking about OUR plans. Not just MY plans. I was beginning to learn what sacrifice in relationship looked like. [Wedding planning will do that very quickly.]
Sometimes I still remind Chad that I do still LIKE him, but I love being able to say with 100% confidence, that I also love him.