At the office. 8 pm on a Friday night. With my yoga administrator, Caecilia. And I’m fussing over syntax in an email.
“Sorry, C,” I sigh, “I know this is picky.”
“No, no,” she waves me off. “Love is in the details.”
I stop short.
“What? What did you say?”
“Love is in the details,” she repeats an shrugs.
I fumble over to my keyboard, “Hold the phones. That is brilliant. I’m writing that one down.”
Love is in the details.
When we love someone, we don’t love them generally. We love for their idiosyncrasies, vulnerabilities, quirky beauty and oddball habits. Love is an arrow, a sweet shot through the heart that is specific, poignant, and achingly true.
I love my sister for her fast patter speech and cute snores. I love my Gram for her determined self-reliance when she fights me for the dinner check. I love my mother for her unrestrained love for elephants. My Dad for his enthusiasm for terrible movies (“They’re so bad they’re good!” we chortle).
Perfection doesn’t move us. Our hearts aren’t swayed by social propriety, grand proclamations, impressive salaries, or perfect hair. I will love you for your tragic flaws, your earnest goodness, and your late night confessions. I will love you for the same things that may also make me want to pull out my hair. Your beautiful humanity. Your ridiculous quirks. I will love you for your details.
‘There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.’ – Leonard Cohen
We don’t express our love through a generalized, untethered wash of feeling. Love is revealed in action through our tiny, everyday choices. We show our love in the fine print. Like when we pick up the flavour ice cream that they like. Or send the birthday text. Or remember to ask about their important meeting. Or wash the dishes, even though it wasn’t our turn. Or when we fuss over the syntax of an email.
Love speaks through the details.
As we move through life, let’s release our attachment to the seductive idea that love is a grand gesture, a grandiose movie script, a backlit kiss on a perfectly lit beach. Instead, let’s reveal our love in the small choices we make in every area of our lives. When we take an extra breath, recycle the plastic bottle, listen for the extra minute, make the phone call, and do the dishes.
As it turns out, these tiny choices aren’t so tiny after all. They are the keyholes to magnificence.