Shall we talk about Romantic Love? Yes, let's do it! Happy Valentine's Week.
So often the question we ask is
Does he love me?
We sometimes forget to ask
Do I love him?
And if I do, what exactly does that mean? How do I know it's love, not just infatuation or some subconscious need to fill a void in my life. Like Loneliness, the need to care for someone, the need to be cared for ... wow, that list is long enough to fill a novel. All the needs we need filled to feel whole.
Here's what we should be asking ourselves:
AM I IN LOVE WITH THE IDEA OF LOVE.
Or am I actually in love with him.
IS HE THE ONE I WANT TO OFFER MY HEART TO?
Or is who I think he can become the actual deserving recipient?
Love is such a splendid thing, isn't it. When we give it, when we receive it. When it's authentic and based on a real foundation of integrity and true friendship.
Being in love fills us to the brim with life, with energy, oh and that rosy glow in our cheeks!
It's fun! It's exhilarating!
The flowers are brighter, the future overflows with dreams come true - in short, when we're in love, we feel like we can do anything. As long as we are together, we got this! We can climb any mountain, survive any snowstorm and the hurricanes of doubt and fear we may have once felt are powerless in the face of this: LOVE.
When we GIVE, we feel expansive. Which of course translates to love as well - when we love, we feel that growth, that strength, that glowing optimism. It feels GOOD to give! It feels GLORIOUS to be in love!
As long as we are receiving AND giving that deep soul, heart, love, affection, affirmation. As long as we are also seeing that spark in their eye, that skip in their step. Sounds so cliche, but seriously, look at people in love when they see their partner ... that sparkly skip is there regardless of age or gender. Love offers this unending exhilaration doesn't it?
Once we have it, hold it, cherish it, we want it to last for ever and always. We don't want to start seeing the world without those glasses ever again. When we are in love, the world can be harsh, difficult, challenging at the very least, but it can all be conquered with this love in our lives.
Oh my friends, it's Valentine's week, and I would love nothing more than to say no more and wish you on your merry way.
But so many of us have loved and lost. So many of us have been deserted, by our hopes, by our loved one, but worst - and most detrimental - of all, our selves.
We've been left standing in the rain of our own tears, holding empty bags of forgotten promises, and can hardly but breathe as we stare down that life road we must now journey on our own. It's hard enough to breathe, how then shall we put one foot ahead of the other and move forward? We've lost who we believed was our biggest cheerleader, our best friend, our confidant and safe place - our HOME.
We trip as we swallow that silenced sob, and choke on our loneliness as we take one step forward.
And then another.
Soon the rain slows to a drizzle, and we find ourselves still faithfully putting one foot ahead of the other. The fog of our loneliness begins to thin, and we slowly discern a flicker of light ahead.
That flicker is the growing awareness that we can, YES we can, walk on.
We are not made of sugar or salt, and that rain is helping pastures green up and flowers bloom.
And that fog is keeping us from seeing too far ahead because it can be intimidating to be that far-sighted. And sometimes, it's more important to focus on the two steps ahead of us, instead of all the way up that hill. Sometimes that's as much as we can bear. And that's alright.
Focus here, now.
Remember to breathe again.
As we walk forward, we begin to see, the loneliness is not so debilitating. And even so, it does not make its home in our heart.
Because we are learning all over again to love our own selves, to appreciate the new us we have become during the loss and our onward forward steps.
No matter how tentative they are, those steps build us stronger with each one.
And with each piece of progress, we become less lonely, and we finally accomplish this goal we didn't know we set out for ourselves:
We fall in Love with Our Selves.
Happy Valentine's Day