Love Is Not Enough

Love asks for action.

This is what I currently believe in, and I’m writing about it because I think this side of the Love coin is one that is easily missed. Why? Because to say that Love is not enough is hard. It sounds heavily misplaced. Everything we’ve ever seen or heard from the side of spirituality or self-help frames this mantra as the focal point: Love is all you need. The Beatles wrote a whole damn song about it. But I believe that’s only half of the wholesome specter.

Love is the result. It’s the award. For some, it’s the final destination, while for others, it’s the journey itself. But Love all on its own cannot stand without action, and I’m starting to understand that this manual labor side of the fence is where the real work begins. It’s also the real work that we’ve been putting off that keeps us distanced from the Love we think we can wishfully bring to life. I just don’t think it works that way.

I’ll be the first to tell you that I am all about Love. Love for the world, Love for this life, Love for myself, and Love for my others. But I always operated under the assumption that Love is, indeed, all you absolutely need. Like Love will somehow get up on its two holy feet and go to work, manifesting left and right, and dropping off my heart’s deepest desires right on my front step, all the while without an ounce of effort on my part. And it’s only when I’ve waited long and hard, without anything to show off as Love, do I fall heart first into that musty barrel I call depression. And for years, I’ve wondered why the hell Love doesn’t just get her shit together and make me happy…and for years, I’ve sat confused with this disappointment.

But I think the epitome of Love rests in perhaps a different perspective. What if we need to work for Love? Just because Love is this ethereal, fluid state of living doesn’t mean it’s just that. What if Love asks us to roll up our sleeves and get dirty? And it didn’t make sense to me at first either, because why would such a pure, lucid, infinitesimal thing that can do everything need to get in the trenches and start digging away, but who the hell am I – or we, for that matter – to paint this picture of Love, anyway? We know nothing, John Snow. The only thing we think we know is that Love is all we need. But as our spiritual gurus and self-help books remind us, we are also not our thoughts.

I want to create a Love in my definition of such a word as the kind of Love that makes sense to me. I want to paint this Love in the light of how I currently represent myself – exhausted, not quite properly showered from a fairly long weekend flight, over-thought and under-felt, spiritually fried, and emotionally distanced. That kind of me doesn’t need a Love that floats on angel wings and strums a harp in my spiritually-attuned ear.

I need a Love that’s seen some shit. I need a Love that asks me to sit down and write out my heart’s deepest desires and then go to work with them. And the work part is where I get to shine, because without work, my Love is just a waiting game.

I don’t believe anything gets done when we wait for Love to begin. We wait for “I love you’s,” dates, relationships, romance, and guidance in life. We write these wishes down on paper and stick it up on our fridge to see, but we don’t move forward after that. Instead, we sit back and wait for our Universal sign that yes, our wishes have been approved and Love is working away behind the scenes. Our orders will be shipped soon.

No.

We wait and wait, only to face disappointment and apathy towards the whole thing, only because we’ve led each and every day with the thought that Love is all we need. No. Love is what we need, period. But we also need more effort, dedication, trust, faith, motivation, and most of all, work. We need to work on Love in order to bring it closer. Love asks for space in which to snuggle into with all of its newfound glory. This means clearing away old and moldy shit that’s accumulated at the back of our metaphorical closet. This also means forgiveness, because Love can’t move in when we’re still holding an open room for that one who got away and never came back. Love asks for action, most of all. It asks that we seek help when we’re sad or broken; it asks that we edge our way closer to the rims of our comfort zone square; and it asks that we find a small hole in our ratted, wooden fence from where we can just peek at our fears and realize they are not higher than our potential.

Love asks for work because Love knows we’re worthy of it.

So, no. Love is not enough. But Love is there, always waiting and always ready. Are we?

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