I Have Something to Say About That…

Thoughts from Author Jenny Proctor

Thoughts on Love


I’m sensible enough to know that love felt by a young, teenage heart is not of a comparable nature to that felt by more mature individuals. Since I fell in love with my husband when I was just 18, such a notion seems to instantly disqualify me from having had any other meaningful relationships. And yet, I know I did experience love prior to meeting my one true love. Twice, I think.

I loved a boy named Paul. We met at a summer church camp, then continued a long distance relationship on and off for the next two years… He was adorable, and inspired all kinds of ridiculous poetic nonsense in my journals. He was on a mission in Korea when Josh and I met and married. Jordan was born before he returned home. (Cruel, I know. But really, we were just friends by then. He’d pretty much decided his mission was more important than me, and rightly so, though I certainly didn’t feel that way at the time.) I will always be grateful to Paul though… he taught me a great deal about how my heart works, and taught me the value of dating honorable, standard sharing young men.

The other was a different sort of love – one that encapsulated much of my high school experience. He was my first boyfriend in the sixth grade, and then one of my very closest friends through all of high school. He was a constant… an ever loving, never judging, force of happiness that literally lit up even the dreariest of circumstances. It’s only in hindsight that I realize how much our relationship really meant. Our friendship had its ups and downs – I’m not sure I was always as kind as I could have been – fickle and inconsiderate as teenagers often are. But we endured. And we’re still friends.

Alright. Maybe there was one more. An adorable little catholic boy who looked a lot like a young Robert Redford. I wonder if he still does? (Note to self: Check Facebook for Robert Redford look alike photos) While it might only qualify as puppy love, I can’t deny my heart felt something noteworthy, at least for the point of this post.

Yes, I DO have a point, lest you think I simply felt like taking a stroll down memory lane. I think God has a way of preparing us, conditioning us for the experiences that we haven’t yet faced. Matters of the heart are no exception. I’m not sure I would have been the same person, prepared and ready for the hasty love story that became my marriage had my heart not yet discovered even an iota of what love really was. I know of many a marriage that generated from the very first spark of love ever felt by either party – first kisses bestowed upon the only lips one will ever kiss again. One can’t deny that such a love is romantic in its own right.

But sometimes, as Carol Lynn Pearson, one of my favorite poets, puts it, good ground needs a bit of preparing before it’s ready for planting.

Good Ground, by Carol Lynn Pearson
I have seen love
Fallen on unbroken ground
Blow with the first wind.
I have seen love
Laid in a shallow row
Unearthed with the lightest rain.
But pain
Is a plow
That opens earth for planting.
My heart is ready now.
Hurt-furrowed, it has depths
Designed for sowing.
Oh, love that lands here
Finds good ground for growing.

9 thoughts on “Thoughts on Love

  1. I LOVE Carol Lynn Pearson! She is one of my very favorites. And I get to see her tomorrow, as she is going to be in Cedar City speaking at a graduation commencement. I’m so excited!Okay, let’s see, what was your question? First love. His name was Ryan. He was in my ninth grade French class. He was my first kiss. We were on again, off again for years. When he left for his mission, he left without saying goodbye. I cried bitterly, for years truthfully. I got married while he was gone. I still wonder where he is today.(Oh, and I’m very happily married to a wonderful man!)

  2. Before I answer your question, I want you to know I submitted a mini-post to MMB that is all about the Lord preparing us for things. I didn’t want you thinking I had ripped you off!I don’t want to detract from the beautiful tone of your post, but honestly, both of my ‘first loves’ turned out to be GAY! For years I teased my husband that I married the first straight guy to ask me out!But in real terms, I am one of those fortunate few who knew pretty early in the game that I would marry the man I did. Even before the ‘gay’ years (and hey, I was a music major. The pickins were slim!). We grew up together, and I was in love with him before my 16th birthday. Kissed a few others along the way, but always knew he was the guy for me!

  3. Your first love sounds like mine. Except add the words “now my brother-in-law” in there somewhere. He left on his mission, and I resisted the draw towards his brother… until I couldn’t anymore. I got married 2 days after his hump day, and I was hugely pregnant when he got home. I am constantly thinking about how my first relationship prepared me for my current one – mostly in that I’m super appreciative of the differences between the two brothers. Oh, and I probably wouldn’t have paid attention to my husband if I hadn’t fallen in love with his family while I was dating his brother.

  4. Beautiful prose. Love the thoughts. I truly enjoy every post on your blog (even though I’ve never watched American Idol!)My first love? Me and a friend decided in the 8th grade that if we ever went on a date with Jay–he was sooo beautiful that the whole female population of the school was in love with him–that our lives would not have been in vain (she eventually married him). Jr prom was my first date with him. We dated for over two year. It was exciting and flattering, but we couldn’t talk about anything ordinary. Great gospel discussions, but other than that, just uncomfortable silence. He was a wonderful example of high standards, but mostly I learned how important it is to be able to laugh and converse together. I was married and my first was born before he came home.The shocker to me came five years later when I was teaching gospel doctrine in my ward and he and his sweet wife walked into my class. They were moving and had, unknowingly, picked my ward of all places!!! I was so flustered I could hardly speak, and then embarrassed and confused that I was flustered. After all, I’m madly in love with my husband, so being sooo discombobulated felt almost like a betrayal. I got over it but it was very disconcerting to me at the time.Okay, I got carried away walking down memory lane. Sorry! I’m done now!

  5. Well, let’s just say that I enjoyed the walk down memory lane with you, having been there for all of it too! Of course, I could add a few more hilarious stories from other boys that never made it into the “love” category. Now that’s a little more fun!My first love, well, you know the two that I thought I was in love with through the years. The first one, probably not real love. The second one, yes. He is the reason I appreciate my husband so much now. Do I want to take that walk down memory lane…oh wait, we did that last week so I think I’ll skip this one!

  6. First love, first husband. Though I did have one legitimate boyfriend just before who got me ready for the real Mr. Right when he showed up. Prepared? Sure thing.

  7. hmm, there are two that prepared me. The first one, Jason C (as I dated 4 jasons) Was my best friend for a long time. I met him when I was 14 I think. Growing up some drama happened and he quit talking to me. But he has left a very lasting impression. He helped me to learn that I should be true to myself no matter what. The second main person that had a huge effect I met when I was 18, we dated for about a year and a half and then started talking about getting married. He was Baptist though, and I had to decide between the church or him basically. After a lot of praying, the church won. He taught me how valuable the church is, and how much it really means to me. Right after we broke up is when I met my husband, who is a member, we were engaged in a month.

  8. I sort of agree. I think that I could not possibly have the strong, stable, loving marriage that I do now had I not experienced relationships prior that taught me valuable lessons.My first love was a boy with blond hair. He had a quirky sideways smile. We learned alot together, but the love I had for him pales in comparison to what I share with my husband.

  9. HF does have a way of preparing our hearts for future experiences, romantic and otherwise. Deep thoughts…good ones. PS: My first “love” is now works with dead people (he runs a funeral parlor). But my *real* first love, I married (a different guy entirely).

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