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Love in the (Google) Docs

When my partner and I first started dating, I was telling him about a project I was working on. Ever supportive and perpetually interested, he shared his thoughts and ideas and made himself available as a resource to support the work. Knowing it would be easier if he could see what I had so far, I asked for his email address and gave him view access to the Google doc.

Some time later, we would be in a “study hall” together, our affectionately named time to video chat from our respective homes and work on our own projects or ideas. It’s one of our favorite ways of coexisting from afar. This time it was his project I was hearing about and as such, it was he who was sharing his working document.

I got an email notification. … has given you edit access.

Whoaaaa, I joked, edit access?! That’s crazy. You’re just trusting that I’m not going to come into this document and change all the “t’s” to “j’s” or what? I mean shoot, I’ll give you my heart but not edit access to my Google docs.

We’d laugh about this for months—me shocked at the level of trust required to give someone edit access to an important Google doc, him shocked at my shock.

The recurring bit came into my mind recently as I recalled another conversation with a friend many years ago. We were discussing if I’d ever vary my daily “Happiness is” posts (perhaps doing posts in the form of “Friendship is” or “Love is.”) It was determined that I didn’t have enough experience to try to explain what love is.

But I’m learning.

And I think it might be as simple as putting faith in a stranger and watching them turn into a friend. Nurturing that friendship and seeing it grow into something more. Maybe it is as simple as being brave enough to give someone edit access—even if the people who came before deleted your work.

Perhaps, even, because they deleted your work. Perhaps love is really about knowing what could happen if you open your heart so completely, knowing you could get burned. Love is opening your heart anyway. Taking the chance anyway. Believing in the person sitting across from you anyway.

Giving them edit access. And watching what happens when two minds contribute to one beautiful adventure together.


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