Stories inspire me. My stories are mostly about music and dogs and family and my true love and bikes and hikes and mountains and stuff. Here’s one about true love…
Tonight my 17-year old man-boy is out on a date with the love of his young life. Yep. He’s in deep, gang. He pulled out all the stops (proud mom) to celebrate their one year anniversary. She’s so worth it. We adore her.
Y’all, i come from a crazy place when it comes to young love. Ya see, i have the story of love birthed out of rock solid friendship at the ripe old age of 17. God dropped my true love on me when i was 15 and after a stint as BFFs, forever became the plan. So, i like to think i’ve got something to offer the new-to-love young ones out there. So tonight, while my two favorite young lovebirds celebrate their new beginnings, i pondered what i would tell them about true love…
1. Words should be written.
Never underestimate the power of written words. Words invite magic. Brent and i have history. We’ve shared a deep, bumpy, breathtaking ride and by some miracle of teenage hoarding, we’ve amassed a pretty impressive archive of notes and letters throughout the years. My 46-year old brain whitewashes the depth of the struggles and joys. But, when i open our big ‘ol binder of notes, i hear our story narrated by our 16-year old voices. Happy, carefree times dripping with inside jokes and song lyrics. Painful and seemingly unfixable arguments written out with tear-stained spots.
These moments you’re experiencing NOW will never feel the same later. It’s magic to re-read the words of first love.
In this digital age, written words are rare. Bring ’em back. Hold ’em close. Write words.
2. Experiences stick; stuff gets lost.
I remember one of the first gifts Brent gave me when we started dating in 1987. It was a shiny gold rope chain bracelet. Yep. That’s right, people.
Oh how i loved it. I was pretty sure it would be on my arm forever and ever, amen. And it lasted exactly 5 class periods. To this day, i’m convinced given enough time and man power i could find it in the yellow locker section of Marcus High School. Here’s the deal…as lovely as my bracelet was, i have thousands of bracelet-worthy moments with my love that had nothing to do with gold. Do i wish i still had that lil bracelet to cherish and pass down to my kids? Not really. i treasure and hand down the keepsakes of our experiences…stealing water from his canteen in the Grand Canyon, our first kiss to a Journey song in my mom’s driveway, my novice attempt at making quiche (in a graham cracker crumb crust, y’all) for him during 2-a-day practices, rowdy basketball games, and late-night jack in the box drive-thru adventures. Live life. Treasure and share experiences. Fancy gifts just get lost in yellow lockers.
3. Focus on the unchanging.
As i write this, my boy and his true love are facing a big change…she’s leaving for college in a few weeks. i can see his face fall while he does the math on how many days/hours/minutes/seconds they have left in the same town together. But truly, the best advice i can give him is to shift his focus from the changing to the unchanging. Honestly, i didnt really pray my way through those early years with Brent. But, i know now there were many faithful folks praying hard over us. They were praying to the One who never changes, praying to the One who already had the story written out. Beg Him to lead you where/how/to what is best for you and your love. He will never fail you. Circumstances change, He never does.
i’m inspired by true love. i live in it daily. Seeing it play out in my boy’s life is a gift i’ll cherish…like a much fancier version of that forever lost bracelet. Words. Experiences. Our unchanging God. Buckle up, son. Your mom is praying for you.