I love you

by jexmas on February 6, 2016

“Bye,” you said as you were leaving for work. “I love you.”

“Bye,” I said.

The front door slammed. Later, when you came home, the front door slammed again. You strode into the kitchen, standing right in front of me. You were irritable.

“Why didn’t you say ‘I love you’ this morning when I left? Is something wrong? Are you being passive-aggressive about something?”

“No, I didn’t say it because I’m sick of saying it every time one of us leaves.” I put my hands on my hips for emphasis.

You rolled your eyes. “Really? It isn’t easy for you to say ‘I love you’ when I leave?”

“No, of course it’s easy, but it feels like it has become such an obligation. It’s as if you believe that we don’t  really love each other if we don’t say it every time we leave. And that’s not true.”

You frowned. “But what if one of us dies and we haven’t said it to each other?”

“So what? Do you really think if I did not say I love you and then you got run over by a bus that I would feel you had died not knowing I love you? That’s just ridiculous.”

I sat down on the couch and patted the seat beside me. You were lost in thought, but you sat down with me.

“What if we had just had a fight? What if we really hated each other. And we have.”

“Yes we have, but again, so what? We can fight and I can hate you in the moment, but I still love you, even when I hate you…sort of.”

We were sitting side by side and you turned to face me. “Sort of?”

“Well, I mean that if we had a big fight and then you died, I think I would still know that you loved me and I would certainly know I loved you. In the grand scheme of things, it is why we’re together, right? This is what we signed up for. There has to be some way we can trust each other for that, don’t you think? We don’t have to keep saying it as a condition of being together. It just gets old and stale and loses its meaning.”

“So you didn’t say it because you want us just to know it’s true.”

I smiled. “Exactly,” I said.

“I like it,” you said. You put your arm around me and kissed me on the cheek. “And I love you.”

“You see,” I said. “Now we can say it and mean it.”

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