Love is hard.
The part of you that wants love, that needs love the most, is the part that continuously pushes people away. It’s the part that fights with every fiber of it’s split being to crush anybody who comes close enough, who wants to love you. It’s like you win grandly at this terrible failure. You fight so hard to keep everyone away when in reality you hope that they’ll see through your anger and stay. You have to see who is strong enough to handle you and all your hurts. So which is the biggest failure? Your inevitable ability to wash your hands of anyone who enters within a 500-mile radius of your heart, or the fact that you want their love so badly it terrifies you and you don’t know how to control the fear? In either case you lose someone…and someone the rest of you really cares about.

But love is not really that hard.
Love is patient and kind. The reason that feels so scary is because for so long there was no patience or kindness. There was no one there to say, “Hey, I love you even though I’m having a hard time.” No, instead there was anger and frustration. Rages sometimes. You were in the way or on their nerves. But love is easy. You’ve felt love. You’ve desired love—love in the purest form—and it was simple when you got it.

Love is hard.
It’s like a battlefield that’s continuously in motion, asking for a rest in the most comforting trenches. It pulls you in and lulls you to sleep. As you dream your body soaks in the warmth and the silence, but then something sneaks into your brain and reminds you that love isn’t so safe, so you retaliate and the war continues.

But love is soft.
It encompasses you in your hardest times, but you forget that. And as you work through the hard times, love sits patiently and rallies around you waiting for the moment you’re free from your hurt and your anger. But again, you see only the hardness of boundaries and what feels like duplication of the past. It feels so hard and you feel that love has disappeared. Until you move past the hard time and look back, you realize that love is what held you up.

Love is hard.
You keep hearing people say that you just have to work at it, you just have to want it, and then you just have to do it and you start wonder if you’re doing it wrong. You see quotes about the strongest and the most loving people being those from the hardest places and you question if you hadn’t gone through hard enough things to allow you to see how important love really is. Did I miss the memo?

The thing with trauma, I think for anyone, but especially with those directly involved, is that love is a push and pull. Some days are really hard. Really, REALLY hard. For the parents, they see their child misbehaving, they soak in the struggle, and for a moment they forget what is that they adore about said child. For the siblings it feels like there is so much sacrifice and un-justice. To them it seems that they are not as important as this brother/sister who is constantly acting out, so they too must act out. And for the one who entered traumatized, every day feels like a battle learning to become one with this family. Every one is trying to make it work, but everyone functions so differently that there are times when it just feels like nothing is ever going to get better and the animosity and resentment are continuously present. But then there are moments of complete joy; sometimes a few minutes, maybe a day or two, and as deeper healing starts to take place even longer periods—months or years. Everyone involved starts to understand that the hardships in love didn’t really outweigh the outcome, rather they produce it and create deeper loving, more connected beings. It’s a long journey, it’s a hard one…but what follows is so worth it.

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