“What is this love business?” I asked my mother when I was 11.
“Love,” she said, and wiped her hands on her apron (she was washing dishes). “Love is not the filth you and your brother saw when you stole your father’s ‘Deep Throat’ video—and by the way, I made him throw that and the whole damn collection away. Love is not those feelings that surface when you scoop up a fistful of Vaseline and stare up at that horrible Farrah Fawcett poster that hangs above your bed. Love knows no conditions, no ultimatums, no ‘I’ll do this for you, provided you do that for me in return’ crap.” She went to the fridge, poured a glass of chocolate milk, handed it to me. “Love is a whole bunch of things that I’m still trying to figure out for myself. But if I were to try to explain it in a sentence, Love is wanting only the best things for the other person.”