ILY (i love you)

It’s funny how easy it is to say “I love you.”
For me it’s a physical strain to actually utter the words.
I am careful with what I do with them since I feel they have a very real impact.

As if in saying them I add about 10kg onto their chest and now there’s the burden of carrying that around.
but I suppose they do that happily.

The weight of the words has always affected me
When they’re said I feel punched in the stomach
Like when you’re hugged a bit too hard and your rib cage is crushed

But it’s a painful sort of love
Like when you’ve got a really big crush on someone
And the butterflies in your heart turn back into caterpillars
Stuffing emotional overflow into cocoons
And feigning normalcy to disguise internal insanity

For some people it rolls off the tongue
Because it’s been doled out the same way to them
For me I did not get it so easily
I thought that love was what it was when people gave me things
Thought it was something else entirely
Through actions I believed it fervently
So maybe the words shouldn’t be enough.

And that’s why I don’t say it back as fast as I should
I suppose I imagined a more intimate moment
After gifts exchanged or sentiments expressed
Then those three words would emerge
Usually I need time to mentally prepare
To stiffen my abdominals for the phenomenal event
I need to be ready to receive the hit
So that I may be ready to give it right back

But I’m afraid.
Afraid that my reciprocated words will be blocked off
Like a lame right hook right into the trunk of a tree
And the pain in my right hand will only teach me
That my broken fingers are in vain and that you don’t actually love me
Cuz those words can be cheap like crappy chocolate for 33p
And even then the chocolate is better cause at least…well, it’s chocolate and that makes everything better…most of the time.

I hear them said everyday
From kind strangers who speak so openly
As if love is a free piece of candy that they’re handing out on the street
Or from sassy people who call each other “honey”
Or from those who admire some other’s audacity
Seeing me wear cat earrings, someone once told me
and I couldn’t feel at ease.

And maybe love should be a simple thing
And I shouldn’t think so much about words like these
But it should be sincere at least
And that’s all that really matters to me.

So I make sure that every time I say it
It is coming from the core of my soul
That my love is transcending from every fiber of my being
And that my words aren’t worth shit Sainsbury basic chocolate
But at least a love heart piece that says
“From Me”