Thursday, February 7, 2008

Falling, in and out, of love with you

Recently, I've heard the phrase "growing in love" (and variations thereof) a lot. After some thought about the choice of words, I really like it. "Falling in love" sounds romantic and wonderful, but it at the root of the phrase is the word "fall"

fall [fawl] verb, fell, fall·en, fall·ing, noun –verb (used without object)
1.to drop or descend under the force of gravity, as to a lower place through loss or lack of support.

This definition:

to pass into some physical, mental, or emotional condition: to fall asleep; to fall in love.

is definition #13!

While the phrase as a whole is extremely positive, it's rooted in something negative. We're all afraid of falling. It hurts. I'm still bruised from a fall I had Friday night, and I have problems from a fall I had six years ago. I really don't like to fall.

However, growing sounds much more positive.

grow [groh] verb, grew, grown, grow·ing. –verb (used without object)
1.to increase by natural development, as any living organism or part by assimilation of nutriment; increase in size or substance.
3.to arise or issue as a natural development from an original happening, circumstance, or source: Our friendship grew from common interests.

Sure, growing has its own pains, but, to me, it's much more promising than falling. President Spencer W. Kimball put it this way:

"The love of which the Lord speaks is not only physical attraction, but also faith, confidence, understanding, and partnership. It is devotion and companionship, parenthood, common ideals and standards. It is cleanliness of life and sacrifice and unselfishness. This kind of love never tires nor wanes. It lives on through sickness and sorrow, through prosperity and privation, through accomplishment and disappointment, through time and eternity." (The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball (1982), 248.)

Elder Lynn G. Robbins wrote a wonderful Ensign article about eternal love, which I recommend. He also pointed out being in and cultivating love is a choice, and to fall in or out of love connotes a lack of choice, which I completely agree with.

I'm not saying that I'll never use the phrase "falling in love" or any of its derivatives, just that there's a better alternative. Either way, I certainly look forward to experiencing it again.

1 comment:

emily said...

I like this. I've liked that term for a long time. We must be sisters!! yay! i love you!