“We may only have tonight, but till the morning sun you’re mine, all mine.” – Rhythm of Love, Plain White T’s
Long ago, when I first heard “Rhythm of Love” by the Plain White T’s, I associated the song with a long-distance relationship. I always pictured a couple who spent months and months apart at a time, only to reunite for one perfect night before returning to their own separate worlds.
Ironically enough, although I am now in somewhat of a long-distance relationship (minus the dramatic absences the song suggests and distance of more than 200 miles), I no longer think of the song that way. The lyrics may scream “romance,” but I think the song’s real beauty lies in the idea that when two people only have a short amount of time together, they should make every second count.
When I say “two people,” I am not referring to a couple of sickeningly sweet lovebirds (or several, if you’re into polyamory), and when I say “short amount of time,” I do not necessarily mean “one night.” I find much more meaning in the song when I relate it to any kind of relationship you have with someone you love — not just with your significant other, but with your family, your close friends, your pets. To me, that small window of time that we have, the “tonight” that the song refers to, alludes to the idea that our time with those we love will ultimately end.
Yes, that time may end because of distance, values and various internal conflicts, but in many other cases, that time may be stolen away from us. We may not know when our final hellos, goodbyes, I love you’s and I’m sorry’s will take place.
The past few weeks have shown me just how important it is to savor every moment you have with the ones you love. It was always something I said I believed in, but it never really resonated with me until recently. So many people I know have lost the ones they held dearest, and although I’ve had some close calls, I have been extremely blessed and I don’t recognize that as much as I should.
To sway to the rhythm of love means to enjoy the time you have with those you care about while you have the chance. (Tweet this!) It means that, while you may not always agree with their choices or opinions, you treat them with unconditional positive regard. It means that you accept them as they are, that you love them without looking for reasons to love them, that you recognize their importance in your life and that you express your appreciation for them always, even in the smallest ways.
Although Plain White T’s probably saw Rhythm of Love as a romantic ballad, I think that at its very core it can be expanded to mean something even greater.