“Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.”
– 1 Corinthians 13:13
Love is a complicated emotion. We all strive for it, wish for it, and pray that one day we will both love and be loved. However, it is also the emotion we fear, the one that leaves us most vulnerable and scared despite its promise of fulfillment and joy.
We are all taught what love is from a young age – that warm feeling you have for your family and friends. Built on the care, happiness, and acceptance you both give and receive from these people. We begin to love the people around us, the animals we take care of, the objects that hold sentimental value, and even the past-times that bring the wonderful memories with them. This side of love does not scare us, rather it excites us and gives us happiness and a sense of belonging. It is falling in love which frightens us, as humans, the most.
To fall in love is to trust a whole other person with your feelings and a part of your soul that, once given, you can’t get back. To fall in love is to give someone the power to give you the ultimate feelings of happiness but also the deepest feelings of despair. At times, it seems a far greater risk to give up control of ourselves than to feel the pure bliss and excitement that love holds. Doubt controls our emotions so much that it restricts our abilities, sheltering us from a way of life we have no real perception of until we let go.
It is hard to fall in love in this world. A world filled with so much hate and destruction leaves us with little room for faith and trust in others. It becomes difficult to see through the bad, towards the light that shines behind it, filled with the glowing hope for all that is right in the world. To find the good in the world is to find the good in people, to trust one another, and to find it within yourself to allow vulnerability. The good and bad must be accepted as one for us to believe in and recognize the brightness of the heart and soul in each individual.
Love, as a whole, is a wonderful notion to which we must hold onto. In a world ridden in distrust, destruction, and devastation, it is our duty to find faith and hope in ourselves and one another in order to find the light in the darkest of days. For what is life if we allow ourselves to drown in the shadows rather than find our solace in one another.
For what is life without love.
words by Haley Cox and photo by Ivy Hansen