Love Has No Standard
I asked my daughter why she had such a big crush on this little boy. I told her that someday she may not even remember him at all. Preschoolers don’t seem to care about that possibility. She said to me, “I like Sebastian because he doesn’t have boogers outside his nose.”
I believe it’s these “un” types and moments of love that are significant. The unexpected, the unexplainable, the unfounded, and even the unrequited loves are simple and nonetheless profound.
We walked into the water holding hands, her grip a little tighter than usual. As the water reached her waist, I slung her around to my hip and onto my back. I told her we were going for a swim and not to worry, she wouldn’t have to wet her face.
She put her arms around my neck and I felt her body relax as I pushed us off the ground. I quickly found, that keeping us afloat would require more work than I had expected. Every stroke and kick became surer than the last; propelling us away from where our fears had washed to. The gentle waves insisted and my hard work and I surrendered to them. I put my face in the water and feeling the soft patter of my daughter’s breath on my neck, I fell in love with a perfect rippled pattern on the ocean floor.
“I knew I loved him the day there was a squirrel stuck in his hubcap. He ran back to my apartment frantic with concern. He was freaking out over what to do about this squirrel and I didn’t know what to do about it. I said to him,” “your only option is to pull him out by the tail, but that’s dangerous, it could bite you and give you a disease.” “And then you know what happened?” “No. What?” “He wasn’t really paying attention to me; he looked like he was in a trance and he walked out the door and walked right over to his truck. He crouched down at the tire and pulled the squirrel out by its tail.” “It was that moment, I knew.”
I knew I was pregnant before the results came. I knew I had options. I was glad I had options. I didn’t know this baby, but I did know that I had this love. I had this brand-new love. One I couldn’t explain to myself or to anyone else. I just had this enormous love.
Love wants no explanation, but, I think I’ll tell my daughter that Sebastian’s not having boogers outside his nose is a very good reason for her to like him so much. In fact, I will add that criterion to my own.
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