She warrants authentic, noble love, and a man who accepts her as she is.
At a young age, I was sold the promise of happily ever after, where Walt Disney himself played out wondrous scenarios before my impressionable young eyes. Pledges of a Prince riding through thorn filled thickets and saving me from my little-old-self, that happily ever after where the two of us would build a family.
Ever since I can remember, I have been in love with the idea of love and what I believe it should encompass. It wasn’t until recently I realized I deserve more than a fairytale love story, I warrant authentic, noble love, on my terms. The love story I write with my heart and feel in my soul. Not only that, I deserve happiness and a man who appreciates me for who I am, not what he wants me to be.
I have often feared to be my authentic self, not only for a man but society.
I have put myself down instead of building myself up. None of which has been different in my relationships. I have felt a failure as a Mother, Wife, Girlfriend, Friend—the list goes on, all of which comes from being a people pleaser. I’m not some broken soul; I don’t believe in being broken. But I do believe with my whole heart that my bruises and scars have given me the strength to become the woman I am today, the woman who deserves love the way I desire it.
If you love me …
If you love me, tell me I am good enough when you see my eyes fill with tears because I couldn’t find the strength not to yell at my children. Notice I am beating myself up for not being a good enough Mom and hold me in your arms so I can feel your strength.
If you love me, remind me that I can be a pain in the ass, but you wouldn’t have it any other way. Love me for all my imperfections, instead of trying to change who I am.
If you love me, discern my smile when I see a flower make its way through a crack in the sidewalk, because I believe the flower is a symbol of strength, growing through adversity, just as I have.
If you love me, touch me as you walk by me, so I know we connect through our skin.
If you love me, laugh with me as often as you can, remind me to be silly with you even when I want to scream at you for leaving mud all over the kitchen floor.
If you love me, find time to kiss me wherever we are to remind me I am important to you.
If you love me, remember how much I love you, and every word off your tongue I feel inside my heart. Be careful with your anger towards me, I may not recover as easily as you may perceive.
If you love me, clean the toilet.
If you love me, help me when you see me struggling with keeping the house the way I want it. It may not be important to you, but it is to me.
If you love me, respect me. Don’t play me for a fool; I don’t need to know where you are always, but I deserve honesty.
If you love me, give yourself to me, tell me what scares you, so I know you trust me. Lay with me in bed and whisper your soul into mine, it connects me to you.
If you love me, remember I am only human, I will make mistakes.
If you love me, hold my hand when we walk into a room full of people I don’t know, so I feel safe and comfortable. Introduce me to your friends so I don’t feel too needy of you and can make my way through the crowd without fear.
If you love me, be my teammate when I face adversity. I need you by my side.
If you love me, disagree with me, but appreciate my opinion. Argue with me respectfully but also, tell me when I have taken an argument too far.
If you love me, lay in bed with me on a Sunday afternoon and wrestle with me until it turns into mad passionate lovemaking.
If you love me, tell me I am beautiful even when I don’t believe it myself.
If you love me, love who I am. Love what embeds the twinkle I get in my eye when I do something with passion. Encourage me to do what I love because it releases happiness inside me.
If you love me, kiss me goodnight and wake up every morning looking into my eyes.
Finally, if you love me, know I will do these things and more to show you how much I love you.
I know love isn’t perfect. However, we often neglect the ones we love, taking each other for granted. There is no fairytale, and happy endings are what you make of them. In the end, we all deserve the kind of love we need to be the exceptional people we are meant to be.
Some may call me a hopeless romantic, but I disagree, I am a lover of love and don’t we all deserve the kind of love which makes our soul tingle, heart beat fast?
I think we do.
This piece originally appeared on Darla’s site New World Mom.