One of the toughest lessons I’ve had to learn as I moved abroad is that not everybody has it in them to love like this – nothing stood in the way of this incredible couple. The love that must be between these two gives me goosebumps. And it’s an amazing reminder not to settle – there is someone out there who would go this far for you. Don’t waste your time on the ones who won’t, or you could miss the one who will.

I think that there is a special spark in each person that is a hue and electric intensity entirely unique to that individual. And not everyone is ignited by that spark, but a select few can see that color and feel that heat even from across a crowded room. And the fire kindled between those two people is uniquely theirs. Sometimes it catches quickly, burns brightly, and flames out fast. Sometimes it slowly stutters to death, starved of oxygen – lit only on kindling and lacking a solid foundation. But when you find the one whose counter-spark lights a bonfire that simply cannot and will not be extinguished, no matter the circumstances, that is really something inspiring.

Of course, the fire needs to be tended. Sometimes one person has to feed the flames, sometimes their partner adds the fuel, but when you know that you are with someone who is committed to keeping the flame alive come what may, you have the world. I see things like this couple and gives me hope, despite disappointments in the past. I know that there is someone I haven’t met yet who will love me passionately no matter what life brings – a move to another country, an accident, great sorrow and sadness, temporary depression, mood swings, arguments. Someone who thinks that the fire we’ve created is worth tending, protecting, and growing through everything in this world that will try to extinguish it – and I do know that everything will try. I’ve even actively tried throwing a little water on past flames to see if they’d pass the test of staying lit (if you haven’t caught on – not yet).

And the reward for keeping that fire alive is the warmth of the joy that comes from knowing you’ve found the one that you can trust completely. It’s the family you create because life tested you, you partner tested you, your circumstances tested you, and the choice was to fiercely protect the fire that was lit instead of allowing the flame to die.

So here’s my pep talk for myself, and maybe it’ll speak to you too:

Let that spark shine. Don’t be disappointed if the one you wish would see it doesn’t. Try not to take it too hard when a fire that was kindled is extinguished. Keep on letting your little light shine on until you find the one who refuses to let the flames you create together be doused. It might not happen the way you expect, it may not come in the package you’d imagined, but when you find it, it’ll keep you warm for rest of your life. And until then at least you’ll still be shining.

Shining on from Sydney, xoxoxo!