I think Tevya said it best? “Do you love me?”
Do I love you?
For twenty-five years I’ve washed your clothes
Cooked your meals, cleaned your house
Given you children, milked the cow
After twenty-five years, why talk about love right now?
Do I love him?
For twenty-five years I’ve lived with him
Fought him, starved with him
Then you love me?
I suppose I do
And I suppose I love you too
Tu B’av which begins tonight is the Jewish Holiday of Love or The Jewish Valentine’s Day (not really accurate.)
For more on the holiday check chabad.org
The short version is that back in the day the single guys and gals would meet in the fields and find their basherts. Looking at the essence of the prospective suitor, not the lineage, wealth or exterior beauty.
Today the prayer of repentance is skipped due to this specialness of the date and singles parties are held across the globe.
For those of us who’ve already been blessed to to find our bashert, perhaps the holiday for us is to ask ourselves what tevya asked all those years ago.
Do you love me? Do I love you? No, not the Hollywood shallow version of that question but the deepest iteration of the question?
We’ve fought, cleaned up, milked the cow, starved and had kids together, is this love? If going through the journey of life with its incredible vicissitudes (that was a real word in my bar Mitzva speech – I think that is when my writing career began) of life is not love ? Then what is?
We must ask ourselves again and again? Do I love you? Do you love me?
If the answer is Tevya’s “I suppose?”
Then you are doing darn well!