Lust is infatuation. It's desperate, urgent, it demands immediate gratification, and gives you those butterflies in your stomach that you could mistake for love. All the songs make sense because you're happy, giddy. But it's momentary.
Love is deeper. It builds slowly and then all at once. At first you're indifferent. Then slowly, the person you didn't think was particularly spectacular wows you: they care how you feel and are amazing in bed and cook you dinner at 3 AM just because. They say something thoughtless via text and, just because it annoyed you, show up on your doorstep with flowers and puppy dog eyes. They can't stop thinking about you and want to spend all their time with you (it's important to note here that you shouldn't be a drug to them. They still want to/should participate in their lives: work, friends, family still matter. They just find a way to include you in them. They still make you feel wanted). They support you as you support them. They care about your interests. They text you everyday. They talk about the future. They get jealous, but they respect your decisions. They think you look best without makeup. They value your opinion: when you go with them for a haircut or shopping, they want your help and advice. They could never even dream of hurting you. They want to show you off and randomly spin you around in an impromptu dance while strolling through Washington Square Park. They want to take you away for the weekend. They make you laugh. They yearn to understand you, to completely experience you.
Love doesn't have to mean happily ever after, but it should mean someone who enriches your life, instead of making it more complicated. Love is when someone thinks you're beautiful, even when you've just woken up with sleepy eyes and morning breath and crazy hair. Love is when they share the most intimate and emotional experiences that have shaped them, whether positive or negative, with you, because they trust you completely.
Love is passionate, it's kinky, it's intense. But love is also comfortable. It's lasting, easy. It makes you feel safe. It's healthy.
Never confuse lust with love. The seemingly perfect person can make you think you love them, but speaking from personal experience, when you're in love, you'll know it. Dating in 2015 has left us bitter and cautious: we're told to follow rules and, at least initially, hide our true selves. But when it's the right person, none of that matters. You can be your actually complete crazy self and they'll be fascinated by you. Their idiosyncrasies will compliment yours. You'll be happy. You'll be built up to twice the person you were before. But most importantly, you'll just be.
I've found love, and I so desperately hope everyone reading this will.