By Sarah Fader
Love is understanding, respect, sacrifice, and seeing the world from someone else’s eyes.
Love is being with someone wholly.
Love is wanting to hear her voice, feel her breath on your neck, and then breathing a sigh of relief because she is yours.
Love is looking into his eyes and hearing him say “I love you,” knowing that he means it with every fiber, every cell, every inch of his body, mind and soul.
Love is standing on a diving board and getting ready to jump into an unknown abyss. Love is brave, cruel, truthful, and hard work. Love will leave you bruised, broken, afraid and shattered; until it picks you back up and puts the pieces together.
I want that love. I want to be in that visceral embrace. I want you to see me broken on the floor and accept me for who I am, what I am, and how I am. I love you, and that is what I know. So now, you can love me back.
That is love.
Sarah Fader is the CEO and Founder of Stigma Fighters, a non-profit organization that encourages individuals with mental illness to share their personal stories. She has been featured in The Washington Post, The Atlantic, Quartz, Psychology Today, The Huffington Post, HuffPost Live, and Good Day New York.
Sarah is a native New Yorker who enjoys naps, talking to strangers, and caring for her two small humans and two average-sized cats. Like six million other Americans, Sarah lives with panic disorder. Through Stigma Fighters, Sarah hopes to change the world, one mental health stigma at a time. www.sarahfader.com