When I was in Barcelona a few weeks ago, a girl I met referred to her boyfriend as her “love story”. I giggled when she first said it, but then I started to understand it. While of course he is an individual in it of himself, she is a part of his story and her a part of his – their love story.
I am always thinking about my love story. My love story that has been almost four and half years. From Kenya to Colombia, from NYC to London, to Boston, to Colombia again, from entire weeks, months, years together, to some days spread across a year, gigantic moments and tiny ones, with families, with friends, with strangers, in Spanish, in English, in Portuguese, in bitter cold, in blistering heat. We have done so much.
I think about my past love stories. They were beautiful too, but ultimately had aspects that I didn’t feel were what I wanted longterm. I learned so much from my first love story in college, about what it could be like to care about someone, almost as an extension of yourself. I knew what it was like for someone to care for you, your emotions, your wellbeing, and I liked that. It was my first real relationship, and I am not sure I was mature enough emotionally to understand love, so it was for the better that it ended.
Then, I learn from my love story in San Francisco, about what I valued in a love story and what I didn’t. That I wanted time, more than anything else, with my love story. I didn’t want a love story of fancy things, or affirming words, or acts of service. I wanted quality time, for us to share moments together, cherish time talking about complex things or dumb things, trying new activities and sharing hobbies that we both enjoy. We saw the world differently, and what we wanted to do in our short time living, so it was for the better that this one ended too.
I wasn’t looking for a love story in Kenya. It would have been much easier had I not started and continued with one. But I was too intrigued by him to leave him alone (after all it was me chasing after him…).
What did I like best about this love story? It was the way he saw the world and how he thought life. It was the way that he engaged with people, stranger and friends, with a respect and a kindness. It was a happiness for each day, for each moment, like it was the most precious gift. It was the way he treated me, like there was nothing more important that our time together, that we were making a movie of our lives that was unique and there could be nothing in the world more special than those moments we made together.
I feel very lucky. Lucky, to have this love story that I never let go of, and that I will never finish writing. Even though he lives in Colombia and I live in the U.S., this distance is in hopes that we can continue to write our best love story, being the best people we can be for the world we live in, educating our selves, serving our countries and working through complex issues to try and improve the world we all live in.
My love story supports me in writing my full story, the one of my life. But without my love story, I would be missing a heart. And without a heart, the blood doesn’t flow and the actions don’t happen.
I am excited to see my love story in a few days. We will pick up on chapter 742 – right where we left off and right where we are.