There has been a bit of a shift in my most prominent love language.
For nearly all of My Life, my preferred love language has been physical touch. I would take the test and sure enough — there it was. Blowing the other four completely out of the water — Physical Touch was by far The Language.
I knew this. And it made sense. After my mother died, I was raised by an emotionally distant father. He was not abusive but certainly, he fell on the negligent scale. Physical contact was ‘not done’ — in fact, the times we did hug felt decidedly creepy and awkward. From the time my mother died, I went cold turkey on hugs — at age twelve.
All through my adult life, however, I’ve been healing. My children and my grandchildren played ginormous roles in providing me with the hugs and physical love I longed for all my life. My friends are always there, as well, with long supportive hugs — on call — if need be. I have found the love and security romantic partners never offered or conversely offered with strings attached.
I realized only this week, another love language has moved up on my scale as physical touch has become part of My Life.
Perhaps it’s because I write, or maybe because many of the people I love so dearly now live so far away — but Words Of Affirmation have moved up and taken up a much larger place in my heart.
A text from my daughter to check-in, a phone call from my granddaughter to share she rode her bike for the first time without training wheels, profound conversations with a lover, encouragement from Medium followers and editors, a best friend who tells me they love me, my beloved cousin who can make me laugh till I cry — all words. Spoken and written. And now, surprisingly, carrying weight and emotion.
In my past, words had been used to wound. Wallflowers and geeks know this. We learned to shut out words and the opinions of others. We learned to stop giving fucks about other people’s opinions in order to survive.
The fact that now — after nearly sixty years — words are seeping back into my heart is another sign of healing.
Love is what saves us all in the end. And not so much just romantic love. Love where ever we can find it. Love in all our relationships — with our friends and in our families as well as with partners. Love is everywhere — not just with The One.
Love is Love is Love.