I popped into Walgreens the other day to pick up a few things and couldn’t help but to notice the 50% off Valentine’s Day candies and stuffed animals. The Easter candy going up on the other side of the aisle also served as a reminder that the holiday of love came and went. Mark and I had a really nice long over due dinner at a restaurant that we have gone to every Valentine’s Day since we moved up here to New Hampshire. Without taking away from the celebration and the appreciation that can come from Valentine’s Day, I’ve come to experience love in a much different way. It sits underneath the surface of the love I share with my family and friends, but it expands so much farther and wider than I can often imagine.
Here is how I have come to know love.
~ Love can expand infinitely when we are in the present moment and shrink drastically when we our thoughts and views are coming from either the past or the future.
~Love is a choice we make.
~Love isn’t something we earn or is something than can be taken away.
~Love is a verb and is a practice.
~Love and fear are the exact opposites.
~Love is defenseless.
~Love is generous.
Love comes from within me. It’s something I connect with. It’s not something I can find in the kindness and thoughtfulness of others or notice the lack of it with hurtful words and actions.
Over the years, I’ve taken a hard look at past relationships. Why are their words and actions still hurting me? Are they still staying those things or am I still saying them to myself? Are they still hurting me or am I revisiting my memories that hurt? Through this insight and willingness to accept me and the people in my life exactly as we are, I’ve come to see love in a much more powerful way. The only thing that gets in the way from me loving them, is some how believing that what they did or said to me meant I wasn’t lovable.
I am love. You are love. It’s not something we need to seek because it lives within us. Think of love as a source of energy. The more we use the energy, the stronger and more expansive it becomes. Our practice, whether it be on Valentine’s day or the other 364 days of the year, is connecting with that source again and again.