SUMMER SHORTS: “All of Me Loves All of You”
Summer Shorts is a weekly short-read in honor of the season, to convey ideas about relationships and life in the blink of an eye.
If you have been thoroughly loved, you know that your partner is often (in the words of singer John Legend), more accepting of “all your perfect imperfections” than you are.
My husband, Eric, when he was alive and well, was really good at approving of “my perfect imperfections,” and “all your curves and all your edges” (also John Legend’s words).
Once, in fact, Eric sat me down to settle the subject forever and ever. He gave me a detailed, complete run-down of all the ways he liked me physically. And he told me how much he admired me, was proud of me, and believed in me. He hoped his support of me was clear, and that it made a difference.
He also told me he enjoyed how I looked first thing in the morning, and how he never cared one whit about the clothes I wore.
He mentioned that he could never possibly tire of looking at me, because to him I looked “just right” whether I was working in the garden or dressed for a fancy dinner. Often he preferred the garden look.
When he said I looked “just right,” I heard it as “Oh, he thinks I’m beautiful.”
He confessed one day that he regularly watched me out the window in the in the front yard, when I was figuring out where to plant something, or simply walking around enjoying the flowers, because he loved how it felt to watch me be with them.
I have to say, it does a girl good to be told such things.
However, Eric never volunteered the words, “I love you.” I know those particular words are important to many people, and I would have enjoyed hearing “I love you” from him, absolutely. It’s a sweet thing to hear.
But the fact that those words didn’t roll off his tongue was just fine with me, because I’m really good at translating.
How he looked at me or brushed by me in the hallway or held me said it all. The way he took my hand, the way he did things for me — all of it, to me, said “I love you.” I am happy to say that I was very well-loved, and am equally happy to say I knew was loved.
For fun, however, sometimes I would ask him, “Do you love me?”
Each time, he would answer, “Mostly.”
Which I thought was hilarious. The question and the answer became a tradition with us. Eric had so many ways of saying the word “mostly” — tender, spirited, even annoyed. But however he said it seemed to bring us closer together. I loved all the ways he said it, because his answer was true in that moment.
It’s good to be lighthearted about these things. (Wise-Person-say: Humor and a wide-angle lens saves relationships! Ah-Ha!)
Below is a song from John Legend called “All Of Me.” It’s a beautiful song, and I predict you’ll be singing it about the house today, or as you head to work, or on your lunch break in between bites.
Here’s the very best part:
‘Cause all of me
Loves all of you
Love your curves and all your edges
All your perfect imperfections
Give your all to me
I’ll give my all to you…
The very end of the video is a white dress wedding, which is a little too traditional for my tastes, but hey, it isn’t my video. I just wanted you to know that, to my way of thinking, there are plenty of other suitable endings for “all of me loves all of you.”
I hope your summer is filled with love, that you are surrounded by those who love all of you, and that you reach into the corners of your soul to love all of them. The world could use more love, deep love, true love.
Terri’s book of photography combined with poetry: 100 Words: Small Servings of Whimsy and Wisdom to Calm the Mind and Nourish the Heart.
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