Pretty much anytime we see pictures of two people who love each other, we see something like this; a brunette couple in matching white tops snuggling in a pile of lilacs. If you’re on Facebook, love looks like two classmates from high school wearing collared cashmere sweaters, standing next to a barn, laughing into the sky. Obviously, you pay to have these photos done. They look great on your wall. But a real picture of love doesn’t look like two perfectly made-up people smooching against a woodland background.
At least not in my experience. I’m sure some of ya’ll have had all sorts of sexy adventures in the outdoors. I’m not one of them. Side story: Damon and I spent the last night of our honeymoon camping. He decided that he didn’t need a sleeping bag. We live in friggin Utah. You go up into the mountains period after 6 PM, and you’ll freeze your buns off. At 3 AM, he was burrowing against my sleeping bag for warmth. Obviously, no honeymoon activities took place that evening…we packed up about three hours later.
Anyways, we see two people in love when they get their engagement and wedding photos done. I love seeing these pop up on my Facebook News Feed. Most of the time, the smiles and emotions are genuine. They’re lovely photos. I get the warm fuzzies when seeing them. But we don’t see what it looks like after they get back from their honeymoon. Lemme tell you what my love photos would look like.
Love for me has looked liked a boy hugging a girl as tightly as he can. His eyebrows are drawn together in concern. Her eyes are red from crying, and her nose is running onto his shoulder.
Love looks like the girl getting home from a hard day at work. It’s their first month of marriage, and they decide to make dinner together. The water is boiling for the pasta, so she turns on “My Heart Will Go On”, and they slow dance in the kitchen. (Yes, this really happened. Yes, it was cheesy AF.)
Love looks like the girl washing her hands and seeing a blue plus sign on the test on the bathroom counter. She screams the boy’s name, and jumps into his arms as he runs into the bathroom. She starts tearing up while they spin in a circle.
Love looks like the boy staying up later than he should massaging the girl’s legs because being pregnant makes her restless leg syndrome worse.
Love is the girl turning that boy’s arms purple as she pushes out their first child, a baby girl with her eyes and his face.
Love is the first two weeks after their daughter is born. The boy goes out to get diapers for the baby and the girl. He holds the baby while she showers.
Love is the boy taking the night shift of 5:30 PM to 6:30 AM for a year so that they girl can go to school during the day while he watches their newborn daughter, even if he only gets three hours of sleep on average.
Love is standing in the driveway after a yelling match. The boy puts his arms around the girl, even though she just wants to stay mad.
It’s finding his dirty pants on the floor for the nine hundredth time and just throwing them in the laundry basket instead of hunting him down. Because what the heck, right?
It’s after the worst mistake yet. She sits on the kitchen floor in silence while he stands against the wall with his head down. Still upset. Still hurt. They stand up and hug for forever anyway, because calling it quits just isn’t an option.
So, I love seeing the professional photographs of two beautiful people announcing their best “yes” yet. They’re good reminders of what you started together. Because the most heart wrenching and solidifying moments of love almost always happen when you don’t have a camera.
*One of the more sappy posts that I will ever write. And someone keeps hiding onions next to my laptop.