The power of love brings out strength we didn’t know we had.
When you live life on your own terms, it’s easy to allow yourself to fall into comfortable routines. After all, if you’re happy, why push out of your comfort zone?
But when the health and happiness of another person depends on you, things change. When you share your life with people you love, the desire to make them happy, to keep them safe, becomes an essential part of your happiness. It isn’t about putting others before you, or not loving yourself anymore. It’s that loving yourself becomes part of loving the ones who matter most. Because without them, without their happiness, the world would mean so much less.It becomes a privilege to live for them.
That’s what the heroine of The Scandal Behind the Italian’s Wedding, Minerva King, discovers when the care of her late friend’s baby falls to her.
Min has never thought of herself as strong. The ugly duckling in a family of swans, she’s always felt insecure. Not only because she feels like a duckling in looks, but in personality. She’s never felt particularly special or talented, not when compared to her sister or brother, who are both wildly successful, or even her parents, who made fortunes from nothing and rose to prominence thanks to their drive and tenacity.
Min has always preferred to live quietly.
But when little Isabella’s very life depends on Min throwing herself in the path of both the spotlight and her father’s ruthless business protégé Dante Fiori…she does it.
Baby Isabella is the daughter of Min’s former roommate, and a very dangerous man. Min stole Isabella in the dead of night, and has passed the child off as one she gave birth to in order to keep her safe, and even though she knows she’ll be incurring Dante’s fury, she announces to the whole world that he’s the mysterious father of her baby, hoping that it will protect Isabella’s identity and keep her safe from her birth father.
Marrying Dante puts Min in a situation that challenges all of her insecurities. Marrying a man she feels is far too beautiful for her, in front of the whole world, brushes up against all of her insecurities.
In the end of course, it’s a good thing, as Min finds love with a man she never thought she would. Her willingness to sacrifice, to get out of her comfort zone, all for the love of another person, makes her better in the end.
And it’s because of the strength she found in that fierce, sacrificial love. Her love for Isabella eclipsed her love of comfort, her love of normalcy, her love of safe. But it was the best thing, not only for Isabella, but for Minerva herself. Because love is like that. It can be hard, it can demand sacrifice, but it makes you strong, it helps you heal.
The world sometimes sees the decision to love in a sacrificial way as a weakness. It’s a testament to strength, to love like that. And it’s the very thing that makes life worthwhile.