Our love isn’t a tearful love, or an aching and longing and suffering love. It doesn’t keep us up until dawn, pricking us with pins to prove that our adoration is real. In our embrace, pain and passion are not synonymous.


Love doesn’t have to be hard to be real, difficult to be worthwhile, sorrowful to be legendary. Love doesn’t have to howl or yell. It can exist in whispers and sighs, and in the lighthearted moment when the door finally opens after a long day and home wraps its delicate arms around you. 

True love doesn’t have to be fire. It doesn’t have to burn brightly, showy and flashy against the darkness beyond. Love can be a lantern that lights your way, keeps the path bright but doesn’t threaten all around it. Love can be the gentle light of hope, not the roaring bonfire consuming anything tossed on.


It’s okay if love is easy. No one will knock on your door at night, demanding to see proof that you’ve spent hours in tears prostrating yourself at the altar of your devotion. No one is keeping score of the fights, the snide insults, the battles fought into the early hours of the morning in the name of pride. Never martyr kindness in the name of love.


The strength of love isn’t tested by the weight placed upon it by those it claims to bind. The scar tissue and fissures that make love’s gentle touch more a sting than a caress are not badges of glory. Just because love can survive deep freezes and wicked heat does not mean it must be made to do so.

The rules of love should be amended as follows: Never go to bed angry. Kiss each other good night. Be each other’s loudest cheerleader. Do no harm. Get the joke. Join forces against the rest of the world. Kiss each other one more time to seal the deal.

Our love is a laughing love, or a giggling and silly and nonsense love. We reach out to each other as we sigh with relief. There you are, finally we’re a we again.


Nothing could be more important than bringing a smile to each others’ faces to chase away the shadows of the world beyond our doorstep. There will be time enough tomorrow for worry and strife. For now, let’s just be.

Bridey Heing is a freelance writer living in Washington, D.C. Her interests include travel, international politics, film, and tattoos. More of her work can be seen here.