Every week I say something like “I have to write a blog post! What should I blog about?” And every week Em replies “Blog about how much you love me.” Which I always ignore, because I obviously don’t love her that much.
Except this week, this week I’m taking her up on her suggestion.
The problem is, as has often been pointed out to me, I have no emotions. This isn’t quite true, I do have some emotions, but if being neutral is a zero then my emotional range is between minus two and positive two. Except when I saw Bruce Springsteen in concert, then I reckon I made it to a three. Oh, and when I got married.
The point is, I’m not very emotional, and even if I were, how can one quantify something like emotions. “How much do I love my wife? Hard to say, somewhere between thirty litres and 80 decibels”.
But then I remember that everyone’s favourite Christian hip-hop turned grunge band from the 90s, dc Talk, taught us all that love is a verb. So perhaps the measure of love isn’t in feelings at all but in action. I think that’s true. Bruno Mars certainly thought so a few years ago when he sang to some woman that he’d catch a grenade for her and put his head on a blade for her. This is all well and good but no one to my knowledge has ever thrown a grenade at Em, and I’m not that good at catching anyway (dolphins have better hand/eye coordination than me, and they don’t have hands). I hope I do love Emily enough to at least valiantly attempt to catch a grenade, but hopefully, I never get that opportunity. And my love for Em would be pretty useless if I did nothing till it was time to risk my life for her. So I have to love her in smaller ways like making her coffee in the morning, not watching our TV shows without her and remembering her name (I’ve only gotten her name wrong once in the last month, winner!). Love is probably somewhat quantifiable in actions, but I’m not sure a blog post about all the things I do for Em would seem to fit with the spirit of talking about how much I love her. It might look more like all the reasons that I think I’m an excellent husband. (But while we’re on that topic can I mention that I haven’t spelt her name wrong since I applied for our marriage certificate, I am a pretty great husband!)
Probably what Em really wants is for me to write a gushing post about all the things I love about her. I certainly could do that. There are many things I love about her. (Right then she just burped loudly and said “Is this helpful for your blog post?”) I love that she has emotions, that she has taught me to really enjoy eating eggs, that she’s smart, that she’ll watch Marvel movies with me, that’s she’s generous, and that she has smaller hands than me (but larger hands than a dolphin). If I made a long list of all the things I love about Em then I might have a good measure of what is loveable about her, but it’d probably be incomplete. I’m not very good at making lists.
Because I love her
But here’s the thing I keep coming back to, and I’ve written about this before, I can’t love Em just because of the things she does, or because of what she is like. There is a lot to enjoy and admire about her (did I mention she is very funny? No? I love that about her too). However, my best love isn’t based on those things. My best love is free and tethered only to grace. I love her because I love her. The best love I have received is like that. I am loved because I am loved, by my family and friends, and most of all by God. I often don’t live up to the love that I have been given, but when things are going well, that’s how I can love my wife.
That doesn’t really answer the question of how much I love my wife. But I do and I will because I have been and I will be.
Also, my wife burps well. What a woman!