In life I am one of those people who always sees the glass half full, but this weekend I started to doubt this belief and wondered if I had become cold and frosty. As I was infiltrating my brain full of knowledge about leukemias and lymphomas, I couldn't help but notice the world around me. To my right was a young couple sitting across from each other ka-noodling over eggs and hash browns. I couldn't help but watch as the man with his elbow on the table held his palm in the air and instantly his girlfriend placed her hand in his. They just sat and looked at each other hands intertwined as if they were talking through their eyes in complete silence. Quiet honestly, I was looking around the restaurant to see if anyone else was witnessing this scene. I don't know why it struck me so, but what I do know is that I felt something very real and it was love.
Now don't get me wrong I might be one of the last supporters of the old romance; the kind that sweeps you off your feet and intoxicates you until you are so inebriated that you can't tell which way is up or down. Yet, sometimes I wonder if this kind of love exists, and if it will ever find me. Still perplexed by my right-sided visual, I glanced over to my left for a breath of fresh air to see a handsome blond headed man. He had these gorgeous eyes, the color of sky blue. I kept looking over between my multiplying white cells and cancer markers, to observe this most debonair man. To my surprise he started a conversation with me. His voice is deep with the rich accent of European descent. It was then that he explained to me that he was from Germany working for two months in Bloomington while living with his girlfriend. He then told me that he met his girlfriend while she was studying abroad in Germany. The two met and he said they instantly fell in love. Normally, I would have rolled my eyes or maybe even laughed at how sappy and icky romantic this was. Perhaps it was the accent or maybe it was the tone in his voice, but his story just made my heart melt. It wasn't until his girlfriend arrived that I realized that love truly exists. If two people half-way across the world can find love..... anything is possible.
As I got up to leave, I left asking myself "Is this for real?" It was at that point I realized how the powers of love and a little oxytocin can cause people to do things they could have never imagined. Love forces us to mature, to think of others more than ourselves, and places us in a place of vulnerability. My best example of this was a conversation I had this weekend with a guy in my class. He is pretty much the closest thing to innocent and harmless as you can get. Yet he has one love, his forest -green Camaro. He talks about cars like I talk about shoes, thus you can understand the extent of his love. Yet, what he began to tell me about knocked me off my chair. With his big grin he announced to me, "Jen, I am selling my Camaro for a Subaru." It was at that moment I realized that my newly engaged friend was trading his bachelor car for his baby-go-getter. I literally had a moment. Is love really so powerful that it can change the things we once coveted so dearly?
If anything this past week I learned that love matters. I feel that when times are hard and the world looks dismal love can often color it with a bright new palette. While at times I have seen love as suffocating and binding, I do believe that love holds the possibility of taming the wildest of hearts. Thus my hope for you this week is to give love a chance, in your work, your home, on the streets, and in your cars. Because love is not just an emotion displayed between two people but is also evident in the things we do. And trust me .....because love matters.