What do I know about love? Leo Buscaglia says that “Love is the greatest adventure”. Those are powerful and exhilarating words. I believe that. I do know that most people seek it. Babies cannot thrive without it. Life doesn’t have the same meaning without it. The kind of love I’m talking about brings color and beauty and energy and purpose to life. It can heal the mind, body and spirit.
I have loved and been loved. I’m not just talking about romantic love. Yes, that sort of love creates a unique bond and experience. People go to great lengths to attain and sustain this kind of love. Romantic love has inspired countless hours of beautiful stories. But, genuine love requires more of us beyond the hearts and flowers, and I love hearts and flowers: It requires action. To love another is a choice and is confirmed with action: We act in a loving way or we do not.
Other bonds exist that have a tremendous resiliency. Mostly, the bond between parent and child can sustain more harm and trials than that of the more romantic type. I’ve witnessed it many times. We don’t have statistics on divorcing our children, but we do know that fifty percent of first marriages do not last until death do us part. I am one of those statistics. I did not come from a family with divorce, yet my children do. I know that loving them and having a relationship with them is and always will be my responsibility. I do have the power to love them each and every day. I always have that choice regardless of how the other person behaves or feels. I have that choice with everyone I love.
I recently read the book, Becoming Wise:, by Krista Tippett. It’s deep. I recommend it for those who like that sort of in-depth look at life. In her book, she takes a thorough look at the basic meaning of life, and love is one of the five major concepts she explores with great thinkers and spiritually enlightened people. When it comes to love, Ms. Tippett writes, “love makes us want to be close” and “love is caring for others”. Yes, and amen to that. The exhilarating feeling of love can wax and wane. Real love requires staying power, stamina, energy, patience, willingness, empathy, commitment and being there. Love does not thrive in a virtual world. Love happens where we live. Unlike what the movies and tabloids profess, love can be anything but glamorous. Love, however, when done well is always beautiful.
When you really love someone you have to deal with some wonderful and not-so-wonderful experiences and truths. It truly is a matter of perspective. People get sick, have bad days, feel disappointed…stuff happens. Life moves on, and how we choose to look at situations and respond to our loved ones makes all the difference. WE CAN LOVE WHATEVER THE CIRCUMSTANCES MAY BE. We can and must love ourselves. We choose to love the day, people, our job, our Higher Power, this very moment. You get the picture.
So, I suggest not wasting another moment missing out on the experience of love. Avoid waiting for someone else or for something to love about your life. You can show love each and every day to anyone, anywhere. There are endless opportunities to live a worthwhile life. Love is the catalyst. Let it begin with you, right now.