“The fragility of love is what is most at stake here—humanity's most crucial three-word avowal is often uttered only to find itself suddenly embarrassing or orphaned or isolated or ill-timed—but strangely enough it can work better as a literal or reassuring statement than a transcendent or numinous or ecstatic one.”
So says Chrisopher Hitchens in his book "Hitch-22"
I've been thinking a lot about love lately because it equates, whether we realize it or not, with man's complete inhumanity to man. Hitchens is correct - the fragility of love is what is at stake in all of us.
We so readily use those words without giving much thought to the level of importance that the other party may place on them. And then we withdraw them as if those words were part of some cosmic lending library "I love you but I'll be replacing I love you with something else next week". We use them as a threat "if you really loved me you would..." and we use them for guilt "but look what I've done for you in the name of love".
I have a tendency at the end of each year to do an inventory of my life - the good, the bad and the ugly. And when I look back I consider myself so very lucky with the relationships I've had. Dear, sweet Rob - he and I remain such close friends that he was the bartender at my wedding and I'm still his lawyer. Rick who, after 40 years of not having seen each other, treated me as if no time had passed. We fell into conversations on hikes and meditation and parents, closer now than ever before. Lloyd, my roommate for ages - sent me a text as his first child came into this world. These are people who make a lasting impression on our lives, people you know you can count on.
And then there are the others. The bad. The ones who make you feel so awful for having cared. Fortunately for me, there areonly two of those in my life. But no matter how hard I try to remember the one positive thing that drew me to them, it's their level of evil that makes any kind of warm memory impossible. What do you say to those people?
I have found that the best thing for all concerned is simply to say nothing. Because really, living well without them really is the best revenge!