When I was growing up in the 70s, there was a daily cartoon titled Love Is. Each little vignette featured a black and white drawing of two child-like figures, male and female, who for some reason, were always naked. Rounding out this pen and ink cuteness was a quotation, oozing sentiment. Love is…’living for each other’. Love is…’being able to say you’re sorry’ **. As a young girl, I thought they were the best thing ever.
This morning, I skidded across the kitchen floor in my socks through some Wheatabix that someone forgot to tell me they spilled. I bit my tongue before I could threaten to withhold Christmas presents and I had one of those “Eureka!” moments. This, I realized, this is what love is.
Love is…sitting through Alvin and the Chipmunks, the Squeakuel 35 times and laughing when your children expect you to laugh;
Love is…tucking in your children every night before you go to bed because you have an irrational fear that if you don’t, something bad is going to happen;
Love is….cheerfully contemplating grievous bodily harm toward the one that breaks your child’s heart;
Love is….making realistic Chewbacca noises on the floor because it was the little one’s turn to choose and he picked Star Wars. Again;
Love is….dragging your kids to sports practice, pre-caffeinated, on a Saturday morning;
Love is….finding the recognizable object in a piece of kindergarten art;
Love is….relinquishing (remote) control;
Love is….letting your husband sulk a bit when England loses on penalties. Again;
Love is….enthusiastically doing a Boy Scout cheer, even though it makes you feel all icky inside, like a gawky teenager;
Love is….turning the other way when your child announces that turquoise and red go together well;
Love is….throwing up in the tub so that your kids can use the toilet when the family is playing vomit roulette;
Love is….stopping what you are doing to “come, see!”;
Love is…picking out bits of Lego from the vacuum cleaner;
Love is…crossing your eyes until your brain hurts so your children can learn how to do it too;
Love is…correctly guessing that the off-key whistling is indeed the theme tune to Raiders of the Lost Ark;
Love is…moving into the cold spot when your children snuggle up in bed with you;
Love is…”No, honey, you go and play golf! The kids and I will be just fine!”;
Love is…the realization that you would chew your arm off, 127 Hours Style, if it meant saving your children pain;
Love is…having a pocket full of rubber bands, a bag full of dirty bottle caps, and a purse full of crap because your kids think life is a big treasure hunt (and maybe they’re right);
Love is…getting a little misty when it’s time to retire Goodnight Moon;
Love is…stopping at construction sites so your children can watch. Even when you’re on vacation. In another country;
Love is…. going skiing when you’d rather be on the beach;
Love is…not saying “I told you so”. Or at least not every, single time;
Love is…letting your children make mistakes;
Love is…letting your partner make mistakes;
Love is…letting yourself make mistakes;
Love is…realizing that life and marriage and parenting are messy and sloppy and can’t be defined or limited or summed up in a Hallmark sentiment.
And with that, I am off to wash the Wheatabix off my socks.
**Sappiness apparently pays. According to Wikipedia Kim Casali, the originator of the comic strip, made 4-5 million GBP per year at the height of the strip’s popularity. It still runs today, though it’s drawn and written by someone else. And they have clothes on.
8 Comments Add yours
I love this, I remember this comic strip, i used to have a collection of them, sadly thought they got thrown away, but I love your definition of love… Very Beautiful, thanks for the share.
Thank you so much, Sabrina! I remember it well too (and am showing my age). We all make our own definitions of love, as it should be! Thanks for visiting and taking the time to read.
Reblogged this on Wine and Cheese (doodles) and commented:
Another personal favorite from November. A little light fare; a camembert and Chenin Blanc for a Friday afternoon.
sooooooo good!!!!! 🙂
Yeah, I remember that Strip as well, it never shared space with ‘Bringing up Father’ or ‘Dagwood,’ but always stood alone on some odd page, and I believe we we were all puzzled as why they were naked(an allusion to Adam & Eve!!). Love is, madness, when you have all that crap in your pocket(bottle cap and rubberbands) but there’s no escape. A useful tip: if you really love your husband, get him a German passport so he can finally cheer for the winning side(ouch).
I believe the phrase that came up was along the lines of “2 World Wars and 1 World Cup”–not so much ouch as divorce!
Ouch, that hurt my German passport, I’m giving it back, but I’m keeping my ManUnited Membership.
Well there you go, you’d get along fine.