What is a promise?
Is it an absolute? A must do?
Or is it a kinda-sorta type of thing?
I see promises as extensions of our inner souls and as such we must be aware of what we do promise both to ourselves and to others.
For promises are often broken, but not with intent. More often it is with a failure of understanding the scope of the commitment and the ability to live up to it.
I promise myself all kind of little things only to fail.
And in failing, to frustrate myself again and again.
I’ve promised myself to stop swearing. Fail.
I’ve promised myself to be organized. Fail.
I’ve promised myself to stop eating late. Fail.
Instead of punishing myself, I should accept my limitations.
And work to understand why it is so hard for me to keep these vows. Are they even possible?
Where is the disconnect?
Is it in my heart? Do I really mean what I say?
Or am I merely saying what I think I should say, without reference to who I am?
Do I care more about appearances than truth?
Why is it so easy to lie to ourselves? To pretend we are different than we are.
I think it happens when we are afraid to be ourselves.
Afraid to look inside and see what really motivates us and inspires us. Or scares us.
When I look at the promises that are easy to keep “to love, honor and cherish” for example, what makes it easy is when it is unconditional and free.
I allow myself to be true to my heart.
It only becomes challenging when I begin to hold expectations of what others need to do or need to be.
But did my promise have conditions? Did I suddenly rewrite the rules?
Or perhaps I wasn’t clear enough in my pledge?
Maybe promises to others should be clear enough that there is room for amendments.
Or perhaps it is better to not make promises.
But to live in the moment and say “today I love you with all my heart”.
“I want to continue to love you forever.”
“So let’s both do this every day.”
Then in 20 years we can see if it was a promise or merely a dream.
And I hope with every fiber of my being
that our love will prove to be a promise that we kept.
by Tessa Saks