I’ve spent majority of the day yesterday heating my quads and nursing a giant knot on my knee, and today I was making what could only be described as moaning noises as I walked down the 19 steps to my car (yes, I counted them). But you know what? I wouldn’t change any of it for the world, because that just means that I’ve been dancing another day. Sometimes when I’m tired and it feels like an obligation to go to class, I take for granted that I still get to do what I love. But when I hear a great song and my first thought it “yes! new choreography” I know I’m blessed. And the bruises and over stretched muscles are just the price I pay for what I love. Everything you love comes with some type of sacrifice.
One of my coworkers was telling a story the other day about a play-date for his kids gone awry. They had a neighborhood child come over, and while the day began normally, it ended with the child running around a campfire chanting “SACRIFICE! SACRIFICE!”. Quickly the other children joined in to this new game. He carefully pulled his oldest aside and explained that was not the thing to say or do. His child looked up innocently and said, “Dad? What does sacrifice mean?“. My coworker thought about it for a moment and then said, “Sacrifice means something dies”.
Sacrifice DOES mean somethings dies, but it’s typically for the greater good. In the Bible, many sacrifices were made to please God. In life and love we are asked to sacrifice some of our wants and needs for something better. We must die to our selves and our selfish desires to experience the greater good. I sacrifice my body for the art of dance, and while it may be painful at times, I am working towards being a better dancer. In relationships, we often have to sacrifice our wants and needs for our partner. We just have to trust that they are sacrificing for us as well, or it becomes a mess of unhappiness.
What exactly is this “greater good” that I keep referring to? It’s a level of happiness that you will never know unless you work for it. It’s the type of unconditional love that you can receive by sacrificing for the ones you love. It’s hard to achieve, but once you do you’ll want nothing less. My problem in relationships is that I keep choosing men to sacrifice for who aren’t willing or able to sacrifice for me in return. And you know where that leaves me? Frustrated. I’m not saying that I date terrible losers who do nothing for me–because that’s not true (except that guy who was secretly engaged ((long story)) he really was a terrible loser). What I am saying is that in my past relationships my partners have not been able to sacrifice certain desires for me. Something has always been bigger than their love for me. Whether it was an addiction, or the way they envisioned their perfectly designed future, the same bottom line remained: I wasn’t enough.
But the truth is, I AM enough and the right person is going to realize that. We all come with baggage and past relationship fears that we have to overcome. We all have neurotic self-damaging idiosyncrasies that sometimes hold us back in new relationships. Everyone is going to fall short somewhere on our list of perfection that we require in a partner, but love isn’t about perfection. Love means overlooking the minor details that make someone fall short of perfection and loving them anyways. Love is sticking by someone through good and bad. Love is sacrifice.
Wesley: How does your kind define “love”?
Demon: Same as all bodies. Same as everywhere. Love is sacrifice. (Angel Season 4, episode 20)