YOU'RE FREAKING WRONG.
It's so easy to define love as a fairytale feeling that makes you come undone and gives you butterflies and fills you with complete joy all the time, and maybe sometimes that is true. I have indeed felt those feelings before. HOWEVER, at the ripe old age of 18 which I can now so very confidently boast of (if that wasn't obvious enough, I'm being sarcastic), I've come to the realization that I have been so very naive about love. And the dumbest part of it all is that I thought I already understood that love wasn't always a fairytale, but I hadn't really experienced it yet. But this last week I did, and now I think I can say with true confidence that love seriously isn't always rainbows and butterflies - it's compromise (citation: She Will Be Loved, Maroon 5).
Last Wednesday I flew down to AZ to spend a week with my boyfriend (for the record, I hate the term "boyfriend", but my other options are basically either "lover" or "significant other" and both of those feel even more pretentious, so I'm choosing the least of all evils), with whom I've had - to put it in the simplest and easiest to understand way - an on again/off again long-distance relationship of sorts. It's complicated. I don't feel like explaining because that's not really the point. The point is, I didn't realize it until I got home again today, but I had made up these expectations in my head beforehand about how I thought things would be between us. When they weren't all met, even though I wasn't totally aware that I had made them, it caused things to become tenuous and uncomfortable. The kinds of expectations I had were exactly the kinds of things that Katy sings about in her song, and like I said, even though sometimes they can be met, it's very dangerous and harmful to demand those things to be fulfilled 100% of the time in your relationship.
I think it's fair to say that most people want to be in a relationship with someone who will love them unconditionally and never ask them to change because they love them exactly the way they are. Well... Expecting to be loved completely without ever changing anything is pretty selfish. I think an important measure of true love is being willing to change and mold for the benefit of your partner, as well as always being willing to talk openly and honestly about how you feel and what you want. In my experience, talking frankly about things that can be uncomfortable is the quickest way to solve pretty much any issue in the relationship. Communication!
Another important realization I've had: It's totally okay to not feel okay all the time. You shouldn't feel the need to downplay your emotions or your problems or invalidate yourself when you don't feel good about everything. And you absolutely shouldn't try to ignore those feelings when they come. That just causes more problems, and it's totally obvious to the other person in your relationship that something is wrong, so playing it off as nothing and saying "I'm fine" is just dumb. I know because I did it, and I felt SO much better after just freaking sitting down and talking about my insecurities with him. I also had to realize that just because I didn't feel okay, it didn't mean that I didn't still love him or that our relationship wasn't going to work out again - it really just meant that there were things that needed to be addressed and figured out between us.
I guess my point in writing all this (of course besides just divulging all my thoughts as if this were a journal) is just to reassure whoever reads this -which will definitely be very few people - that just because you're not seeing your love life play out like a Disney princess or Meg Ryan in some sappy movie with Tom Hanks, you don't need to give up on the relationship, and you also don't need to wait for Prince Charming or bust. Real love includes the act of falling, and then also the act of staying in love. It's just as much of a choice to love someone as it is happenstance.