We all have those songs that bring us back to a certain time in our lives. Whether they are great memories or somber ones, music has the ability to transcend the present moment and allow us to reminisce about the past or bring hope for the future. I have plenty of songs that remind me of particular times in my life and allow me to relive those emotions. At one pivotal moment of my life in college, I was listening to Three Days Grace while driving, determined to do the craziest thing I had ever done. But, let’s start at the beginning.
I vividly remember the day I met the love of my life. The college library was having a book sale, and I was perusing the book stacks until I finally found one that caught my attention. I grabbed the book from the shelf and thumbed through the pages. I don’t remember what the book was, but what happened next is ingrained in my memory. As I went to put the book back on the shelf, a face peering through the hole where the book had been caught my eye. My jaw literally dropped, and I could not stop staring.
She had on glossy red nail polish and was absolutely stunning. She made eye contact with me, looked away for a second and then back up again giving me a little smirk to acknowledge my stare. I finally noticed that I had been staring longer than I should have, but I couldn’t help myself. Butterflies hit my stomach, fluttered around, making their way up, tightening my chest. I awkwardly tried to look away to avoid her noticing, but instead, our eyes met again, and she gave me another little grin. Then she placed the book that she had been looking at on the shelf, put on her sunglasses ,and walked out the glass doors. I watched her as she glamorously trotted around the corner and faded from my sight.
“Now what?” I said myself. “What are you going to do?” I suddenly felt like I was in my own movie, as the man sees a girl and twenty years down the road, reminisces about how she was the one who got away. In the movies, the man chases after the girl and the results of that encounter are played out, but this wasn’t the movies; it was real life. I knew I wasn’t going to chase after her. I wasn’t that guy yet. I put the book back on the shelf, with my hand remaining on the binding. I remember verbally saying, “What type of man do you want to be for the rest of your life?” I paused for a moment, deciding what I should do next. Then, finally bolted through the glass doors, in pursuit of the girl who had just taken my breath away. I nervously walked the sidewalks, turning and looking in all directions trying to find her. I kept walking and finally, there she was, sitting at a table, seemingly waiting for me to come talk to her. Was she doing this on purpose? Was she waiting for me to come talk to her? Did she want me to come talk to her? So many questions started running through my head. I began to walk towards her, trying to act as smooth as possible when I was actually more apprehensive than I had ever been in my life.
“But the beauty of a woman draws a man to courage”
And I felt courageous. I walked up to her, introduced myself, and our story began. After that initial introduction, we got to know each other more and more. I had never had more chemistry with a person than I had with her. No matter how many weeks would pass between our conversations, we always had something to talk about. It seemed like the perfect fit; it was too good to be true. I was resolute in my pursuit of this girl and absolutely certain that we belonged together. Months had passed, and I had become disheartened that we hadn’t made it work and started a committed relationship yet. I felt like I had to do something bold. I left her flowers where she could find them and everything I could think of, but something would always happen and the relationship would stall and be stuck. So one day, I made another fearless decision in an attempt to show her how much I wanted to love her.
I waited for her to get out of her night class one evening and did something drastic. She walked out of her class and saw me standing next to her car. When she saw me, her eyes lit up, and her smile revealed that she was overjoyed to see me.
“What are you doing here?” she said.
I didn’t say a word. I walked up to her, put my hand on her cheek and kissed her lovingly. She kissed me back, and as the sun went down at dusk, we kept kissing.
I wish I could tell you that it ended up how it did in the movies, but it didn’t. Our story was filled with much trial and suffering after that point. While it sounds romantic, part of me has a problem with my bold decision to kiss her like I did.
“A garden locked is my sister, my bride, a garden locked, a fountain sealed.”
When a woman lets you into her life, she’s letting you enter into her heart. You not only get the beauty and the love, but the deep-rooted wounds and fears as well. You should not be barging into her garden and doing what you will. You should be in pursuit, but she has to be the one to open the door. This includes asking her permission to be intimate with her with even something as innocent as a kiss, something which should be reserved to the confines of a committed relationship. If not, you are possibly setting yourself and her up for heartache.
It’s easy to gauge the quality of relationships based on the strong emotions you feel when you are around a particular person. Emotions do play a vital role in measuring compatibility, but they cannot be the sole indicator in measuring whether or not you should pursue a relationship. What do your friends or family think about the relationship? Many of us have experienced friends who stay in a terrible relationship because they can’t get over how this person makes them feel, no matter how unhealthy or abusive the relationship may be. If your friends have your best interest at heart, it can be very prudent to heed their advice. They are able to be objective when many times we cannot. It’s possible you may be putting too much hope for your happiness in one person. Even if the relationship is physically chaste, the intensity of emotions you feel may allow you to lose sight of reason. Passion and love must be coupled with maturity and virtue or we become a “clanging cymbal.”
No one person can or should bear the weight of another person’s happiness. That hope is reserved for Christ alone.
You will end up crushing that person with expectations that they can never live up to.
We’re going to make mistakes while learning how to love properly, and we may even hurt those we are trying to love. I hold on to the words of Mother Theresa…
“I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love”
You don’t always end up with that person who you think is the love of your life, and who says you should? Maybe the love of your life is that relationship that taught you how to love. As for me, I live with no regrets, and I can still remember that song that was playing on the radio.