Everything I Know About Love, I Learnt from Women
I’ve been properly in love with a boy maybe once in my life. I’m talking heart
stopping, sonata inspiring, leg shaking love. The kind that makes you feel like
God has reached down and tapped you on the head, singling you out for
When I fell out of love with this boy and my world collapsed around me, my
entire life perspective was altered. I fell out of love with him, I fell out of love
with myself and I fell out of love with being alive, which I think was the hardest
blow to bear. I’ve always been pretty into existence, and suddenly I was the kind
of person who tuts in queues and doesn’t look at couples kissing on trains.
While I was busy tutting and feeling sorry for myself, the women in my life
formed a kind of protective shield around me, wrapping me in a cocoon of love.
I’m incredibly blessed to know countless awe inspiring women and now, I want
to say thank you to all the people who made me fall back in love with being alive.
Recently, one of my best friends ordered a book for me called ‘Everything I Know
About Love’ by Dolly Alderton. It arrived and I didn’t just read it, I inhaled it. This
book is a romance, and a monument to the importance and beauty of female
friendship. Dolly documents her relationship with her friend Farly in heart
wrenching detail. I think I cried the most when Dolly suggests that she has no
idea how to be in love and Farly says (and I’m paraphrasing) ‘Don’t be stupid,
you’ve been in love with me for 10 years.’
Women are lucky, we’re taught to be as loving and compassionate as possible.
And while this makes us bend over backwards for men who have no idea how to
return the favour, it also makes us incredible friends. The women in my life could
give lessons on compassion, forgiveness and acceptance.
I didn’t realise it was possible to be as loved as I am, I didn’t realise that people
can love you because of your flaws, not despite of them, until I fell in love with
my female friends. Alderton talks about the collectiveness of female friendship,
the connection you feel with these women who have laid the grout in the
bedrock of your existence.
The women in my life have taught me to swan dive into the depths of myself and
not come up for air. The women in my life have taught me how to roll joints,
scramble eggs and prevent razor burn. I’ve cried in Primark changing rooms
with them, had baths with them and remembered the importance of being open.
To Dolly Alderton, thank you for putting into words what so many of us feel. To
the women in my life (and you know who you are) thank you for reminding me
that life might be unpredictable, but it’s also mind numbingly beautiful. I hope
that we’re all in love for the rest of our lives.