interrobang: story behind the album - by Jon Foreman
What does it mean to be Be:loved?
What does it mean to be loved or to love someone else?
Is love a feeling? Does it mean that you like the way they make you feel inside? Or maybe you share similar interests? Maybe you like the same band or the same food? Or does it mean that you agree with them?
Maybe there’s more than one kind of love. The first love is built on commonality. This love is less of a choice, and more of a happy accident. The serendipitous byproduct of similarity and pheromones: two people who complement each other in this glorious symbiotic union.
But when the first love is tested, things tend to fall apart. The honeymoon is over. And the true colors show. You strongly disagree. And you’re hurt. And you’re angry. And your anger is justified.
“All you need is love! All you need is love!”
But of course the Beatles break up.
and the marriage ends.
and the world goes to war.
Entropy brings all things to a lower state of less order, and the bond that held us together is severed and broken.
What a sad, predictable ending to such a promising start. The first love is over.
But what if there was another love. A second, higher love that is not a result, but a choice. A love that was more of an action than a feeling. This second love is the kind of love that you cannot fall into. It’s a love that doesn’t just happen to you, you have to fight for it. You have to choose it again and again.
Maybe a love like that can only happen after the disagreement. After the pain. After the anger and the resentment. Maybe this kind of love begins when the differences feel bigger than the similarities. When you come face to face with a decision. And in that self-sacrificial moment you choose this other person over yourself.
This second love is truly miraculous: to give instead of take? To disagree and still love someone? To feel pain and anger, frustration and doubt, and still love someone?
The first love feels very understandable: I love what you give me.
The second love transcends this give and take: I love you in spite of what you give me.
“To err is human, to forgive divine.”
Mistakes can be happenstance, but forgiveness is always a choice.
It’s a choice to recognize that the bonds that hold us together are more meaningful than the differences that tear us apart.
The first love loves based on similarities. The second love loves the other in spite of the differences. Our disagreement disallows the first love, and yet, that same disparity allows for the second love to be possible.
The first love comes into being through conformity, united by homogeneity.
The second, higher love is only possible when we disagree. When we choose each other in spite of our disagreement.
“Maybe every “other” is a “we”
Maybe differences are easier to see
Than the family we are that’s underneath
Maybe I need you
Like you need me”