I watched the film London Boulevard a few months ago. It stars Keira Knightley and Colin Farrell. In the trailer (at :57 in the IFC version), to be exact), she asks him that question.
He gives her the correct answer.
I decided to see the film based on those two lines of dialogue alone. (That, and a penchant for Guy Ritchie-esque London gangster films where Ray Winstone is always the villain).
I wanted to see what led up to that question, its answer and what was actually done about it.
Love rarely is killed in one fell swoop. Its death is usually the result of tens or hundreds of slights, ignores, denials, and less respect and honor than is its due.
It usually dies as the accumulated result of lack of attention (half-listening), a phone call returned too late, the wrong answer given, too little acknowledgement and an overall lack of effort.
Doing everything for love requires more courage than any other journey you will ever embark upon.
Doing everything for love means you don’t hold back any part of you to keep it safe. You don’t hedge your bets. You throw everything into the fire.
“And I never wanted
Anything from you
Everything you had
And what was left after that too”
~ Florence and the Machine, “Dog Days Are Over”
(again, the right answer)
The leaping is the price of entry into a new life, a new reality where love permeates every fiber of your existence.
What does it look like?
When my non-stop-eating teenage son asks me to make him a second dinner at 10:30 at night, and all I want to do is chill, I get up and make it anyway.
He follows me into the kitchen where he tells me about his day. I realize that he may be hungry for food, but he’s hungrier for connection. I push all other thoughts out of my mind (no mental multi-tasking) and fully listen to him. I can feel him relax and soften.
Too tired to connect with your lover at the end of the night? Find the strength inside of you. It matters. Deeply.
When you connect with anyone you love (or perhaps anyone at all), drop everything. Be fully present. There is love in every moment, if you can stop to open yourself to it.
Let’s say you are speaking to your lover. Dare to be more vulnerable, to reveal every nuance and meandering of your heart. In the moment, maybe you think you are showing too much and putting yourself in a risky place.
If you are truly authentic, they will meet you there.
Someone has to go first.
A lover once said to me that revealing his heart constantly was the only defense he had. Meaning, truly honoring the gifts of love in front of you, and the feelings inside of you, by acknowledging them with your brave heart, is the only way to keep them flowing.
Your own courage protects you.
In summary. How to love:
1) Drop everything.
2) Give he/she/it your full attention.
3) Always reveal the truth in your heart. Not doing this may be the only mistake you will ever make in love.
This applies to everything you love: people, animals, creative projects.
We’re all fed by the same food.