Most of us have made a promise to someone of “forever.” Is that a fair or realistic promise? It sounds sweet, even sounds promising, may lift someone up in the moment, but what happens when your special someone realizes it was never true? Sounds harsh, doesn’t it? We don’t have forever; all we really have is right now. When you allow yourself to breathe in those words, instead of “forever,” it suddenly makes sense.
All we really have to offer someone is right now - this very moment.
Does that mean tomorrow will never come? No, we can hope, which is a beautiful thing. We can also promise this: everything changes, just give it time, and that includes each of us. We were never meant to remain the same.
Think about the commitment of marriage… some people may never marry because they are afraid of being with only one woman or one man the rest of their lives. That is a really small and superficial way of viewing this institution. Look at it this way – the man or woman you meet at 21 is very different from the man or woman (s)he will become at 30, who’s very different from the man or woman (s)he may become at 50. Same person but you get to experience the “newness” of that person for every moment, every minute, every week, (s)he changes.
None of us are the exception to the laws of nature, and certainly life will not make exceptions for us, nor does it promise to stand still. That doesn’t mean all relationships will fail or you will fall out of love or someone will walk away, never to return. I’m saying you cannot give to another person something that doesn’t belong to you.
Do you really want to set yourself and your loved ones up for failure? That’s what we do when we promise forever; we set them up for inevitable heartbreak. Things happen. People change. Expectations change. People leave, and we all eventually die to this life.
Here’s the GOOD NEWS …
With our very best intentions, we can make the declaration of RIGHT NOW over and over and over again because we have it at this very moment, in this very space. This right now moment really belongs to us, and we can share its’ beauty in as many ways as we choose, for how long as we choose. This gift of love is invaluable. This truth makes love MORE beautiful, not less. It does not diminish its’ luster; it shines brighter.
So, if someone asks you if you will stay with them forever or love them forever, respond in your truth. Reassure them with the excitement of infants first recognizing their parents’ voice that you give them right now because it’s all you have but that if tomorrow comes, you get to choose them yet again.
The promise of hope and right now begins again.