It’s the last day of my 31 day series on love over fear in relationships. These posts have been tough to write, and I leaned heavily on my talented friend Jen to design graphics for me to fill the days when I didn’t have time or emotional energy to dedicate to this intensely personal topic.
I’m so glad I tossed out the tidy topic I’d picked a month ahead and chose the topic stinging my heart. I certainly didn’t realize the depth of fear that plagued my relationships when I started, or I probably wouldn’t have chosen a public platform to dive into it.
I knew going in that it was risky, and as I said in the initial post, I hoped on the other side of the risk was the reward of freedom: freedom from fear, and a few more steps taken out of love instead of fear.
I’ve definitely experienced freedom, which in itself feels terrifying. We forget that about freedom – that the prison we’ve built from our fears begins to feel like home. Standing outside those walls immediately feels vulnerable, and our first instinct is to run back inside.
The fight to experience freedom is worth it, though. The fight for our right to freedom is over and won, so it’s worth every ounce of discomfort for us to walk in it.
It’s left me a little undone, honestly – crying in situations where I’d normally be the stable voice of reason, missing my family like I’m a kid away at camp, emailing online acquaintances with real truth and feelings, blubbering within the opening credits of Parenthood. (Okay, now that last one is just a normal human reaction.)
Relationships and moments and redemption feel a little more sacred, like we’ve really got something to lose if we don’t learn to genuinely love each other.
And we do. This month has kept me up nights imagining what we stand to lose when I pull back for fear of being hurt, when I refuse to say the hard truth, when I make to do lists while Mike talks to me.
What are we living for if not meaningful connections with people who care?
The eternal risk is that we reach out to make those connections, and no one cares. Reach anyway.
It’s been a privilege to walk through this topic with you. Thank you for being here. I’ll keep showing up if you will – here on this blog, and also in love – terrifying as that might be.
This post is the last in a 31 day series on love over fear in relationships. To read the other posts in this series, head here.