and sustaining love
I am watching the snow fall through the leaves of the monstera that belongs to Anaya, sitting on the windowsill. It’s cold, really cold actually, and I am safe and warm while working from the comforts of our bed in a still room. This is my idea of Little Joys.
I recently listened to Sustaining Love, an episode of the podcast How To Survive The End of The World while I put Anaya’s wine glasses next to the glittery, pink, plastic cups that belong to the kids. I listened with intention and felt endlessly soft for my current life and this version of me. They opened the narrative with this (very summarized) idea-
Love is an intention and a choice. All forms of love that we experience, whether it’s romantic or platonic or familial.
Bell Hooks said, “Love is an action, never simply a feeling.”
While all of the content and they way Autumn and Adrienne flesh out their own experiences with various types of love is so beautifully done, I couldn’t help but go slackjaw’d over and over. I kept texting my friend Hannah, the one that sent me the episode, every time I found myself saying out loud, “no shit” and “me too”!
I remember telling her I had goosebumps while listening. I told her how Anaya and I had just had that very conversation-
The idea that we choose one another.
Anaya sees me, and holds such incredible space for me. Different versions of the same me, younger me, unresolved trauma me, might think that “this is it. This is as good as it will ever get so I might as well settle.”
It isn’t that I believe that without Anaya I will never be seen again. It is that I am so seen that I don’t want to choose anything but him and this. A sustaining love.
When they got to the piece about parenting and motherhood, I cried while I replaced my chipped, grey dishes with his black ones in our now shared cupboard. The idea that her children are safe enough to be fully expressive, wholly emotional individuals that know in their bones that they are safe and therefore able to express a wide variety of emotions without abandon, both physical and emotional.
I know her.
I am her.
And I know them. I know those kids.
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