Wednesday, February 13, 2013
If there is light in the soul, there is love
Someone, somewhere decided it would be an awesome idea to have one day to remind others to share the love, let someone know, the someone you may never in your wildest dreams speak to at any other time, let them know of your unrequited love. For others it is a quick stroll down the flower isle in the supermarket to acknowledge you remembered, then there are those, who justify their lack of participation by stating they love all year round and so why bother on one particular day.
Mmmm why bother to express love visually?
Being a long term single household, we refer to it as Happy Love Day, no restrictions on partnerships, relationships or unrequited love, it's a day you can be that little bit more romantic (for some it might be the only time) without needing a special reason to do so. You can be seen holding roses and those ridiculous soft toys and the only looks will be the smiles of people as they are reminded of the sweetness of such gestures.
How do we love, why do we love and what does it look like?
For some the word love an excuse for demanding control, saying what they want and living with someone too committed, too deep in financial liability they can't get out. For some love is painful and hurts, people use it as an excuse to vent their own inadequacies onto others.
If you are walking in any of these stories know that if you are looking for that deep, passionate, hot love they make movies out of, you won't find it strangling it out of someone else. Real love, awesome, amazing love....starts with yourself.
Love is so incredible, it's a level way above happiness, joy, erotic desire, sadness and pain. It is the be all of the all. We have become so accustomed to calling every connection love. Every boyfriend, girlfriend, partner, latest fad, latest job a facet of love. Do we love these things, people, moments are are they merely a mediocre form of something we aspire to feel? If you are letting go of someone or something, if you've lost the motivation to put someone's needs before your own, then how do you call that love?
I've never liked the concept of 'letting go' like it is something you exorcise from your mind and body. Everything, everyone, every experience we have in life moves us, shapes, is part of us. Who we are right now is a mix of all those connections. If you are one of the rare human beings who found real love, the stuff that people look for in novels, poems and the stars, you don't let it go like there is plenty more what that came from. You learn to live with it, you tuck it into a warm place in your heart, it powers you through the years, provides strength, courage and wisdom. You don't need to hold it, strangle it or keep it in your back pocket, it is enough for you to feel grateful to be one of the chosen few to be able to love with all your heart.
Too often, too many stories in early childhood, on movie screens and beyond encourage our children to think love is an external something you find in things, when I have more I'll feel more love, when I find the right person, I'll know what love is. You are love. All of you. Can you stand yourself? Would you love you? Would you be friends with you? These are hard confronting questions on such a soft and mushy day, yet let's get to the crux of it. How can we assume we have the capacity to love so unconditionally when we have a limited ability to love the one person we should know so well, ourselves. What are we offering to someone else? Half of us? A quarter? What is left over from our anger, our frustration, our disappointments in ourselves?
There are many historical accounts of Valentine's Day, I like the story of Valentine himself. It says sacrifice to me and love is at its core, sacrifice.
When the Emperor Claudius II made the decision that only single men made better and great soldiers, he outlawed marriage for young men, in order to create soldiers without love. A young man by the name of Valentine, realising the injustice of this decree, defies Claudius. Now this is where the history books waiver. Some say Valentine was priest who continued to perform the marriages for lovers and soldiers in secret and for this he was put to death. Others say Valentine was a young soldier himself and refused to give up the love of his live, marrying her in secret and was killed for his actions.
As the stories go Valentine's Day is a day of honouring the name of Valentine, his sacrifice for love, above all other pursuits in life, religion, employment, finances; that nothing in life is greater than the desire to love, to share love, more precious than to receive it.
Before the internet, before telephones made direct mobile text, Facetime and connected you anywhere and just about at anytime, love travelled miles in tiny envelopes, sometimes scented, with words touched by the pen of the person, eloquent strokes of ink over pages and pages. You put them in boxes and looked back on them across the miles apart, to keep the love alive. Lovers held on without gifts, daily contact, instant texting, fancy dinners, holidays in the Whitsundays, they held on to what I believe passed on from Valentine, the essence of all that is love, it is hope, longing, passion. These words created friendships, they built the foundations of love that would last a lifetime. For some the letters would be all that remained of their love one, over many wars, many lovers never returned. They didn't need to stick the OMO in the front window of the house or ask someone to 'cut their grass', there was no need to consider love as being anything more than be grateful for having what you had right then. Real love transcended all physical desires, being close did not always require geographical proximity.
Today over time, changes in technology, errosion of basic values, love has become a commodity and as transparent as many of the othe material possessions that fill large, empty loveless homes.
Who today takes a plane to Verona and writes a plea to Juliet, tucking a tiny note in the wall of hope and love? Who these days waits a "thousand years" as the song would have us believe to realise we do not find love, it finds us, that you have loved have loved this soul connected to you all this time.
Love is the last frontier of immeasurable human uniqueness, we love because we can, we can because we must, we must because to live without love is to empty the soul, to live without the basic of human ingredients, Love drives our passions, it pushes us past our pain barriers, it lifts us to places we can only imagine in dreams.
I've been single for a long while now, I've had many a person try to tell me I need to try harder to find someone, like I'm missing an extension of myself and for some reason of stupidity I need to locate it in order to be complete. Let me tell you, I am complete. I don't need fixing and I don't need to shop for someone like I'm grabbing a purchase at Bunnings with a bbq snack in one hand on the way in! I don't need someone to mow the lawn, I don't mind doing that myself & about the lightbulbs, ever hear of a ladder?
Maybe I realised through all the stories, through years of reading accounts of different types of love, sarcasm, pain, suffering and love which transcends all obstacles, maybe I realised love is not something you grab on the way in or out, that like Winnie once stated, what you are searching for is not on any map, you don't need a guide or someone to give to you, that place you are looking for has been right inside you all along.
Valentine loved himself enough to sacrifice his life for others, he loved another so deeply no logic or reason could explain his sacrific other than for love. He didn't need to have his ego boosted by telling him oh what a great job you've done, he didn't need gifts, treasures and reminders; he didn't need to be smothered or resort to manipulating someone in the name of love; he loved because it was the right thing to do, he loved unconditionally, with all his heart; he did not seek anything in return, there was not goal to achieve, no needing to be fixed or 'complete', he was complete. Valentine stood up for what he believed in, he put his heart out there on his chest, he was completely selfless, he knew that great soldiers do not lack love, they carry it as a strength. Valentine was love and his symbol of love is a reminder to us all that great love requires great sacrifice, it requires knowing ourselves, loving ourselves, loving others enough to do what is right.
Love is not a weakness, it is not someone to mow the lawns, reach the lightbulbs, carry the shopping, buy you a car or help you obtain financial security. It is knowing you can love whether you receive it in return or not; forgiveness, selfless, wanting what is truly the best for another human being without any need to receive in return, sometimes it is walking away with love, sometimes it is making a stand, love is never giving up. It is cherishing all that is the other person, like a parent to a child; it is wanting them to be their best, not your idea of their best, what they long for, dream for, aspire towards.
For me love epitomises motherhood; these things and more come easy to mothering. Maybe it's those early soul connections, like a hidden bond between souls.
We have a few extra teenagers over at present and I invited them to join me for yoga before the sun was up earlier today. A series of questions followed regarding my motivation to get up so early, how long have I been doing that, is it easy. Love is not easy. I get up because I decided years ago to look at a picture of my son, at a happy time before he died of cancer at 3yrs and 4months of age; on the bedside first thing every morning and to know great love comes with great sacrifice. To love life is to give your all to it, even when it is hard, you are tired. I rarely know what the term "can't be bothered" looks like. If you love life, then you will always be bothered. If you love another, a child, a man, a woman, your family, you will be bothered. Love is giving up some of the ego that weighs you down, your expectations, assumptions, neatly planned out future, it is accepting the here and now and loving people unconditionally in the package they came in, not the one you wished for. It is loving what life gives you, not what you expect. It is realising that to see another day, to be blessed with a gorgeous view each morning, the clouds bleeding the sun through mist and mountains, you are grateful for the smallest of pleasures in life, so many are not afforded, so many little ones will never see. You will love life and everything it gives you, every lesson.
Whoever he is, wherever he is, you will love with all your heart. You don't need to see it, touch it or have him pay your bills. Great love has no price tag. It does not hurt, it does not ask, it just is. If it takes you a thousand years, you will wait. You will not rush into mediocre, ordinary love, you will find the light in your soul and let it guide you.
Sometime ago I started writing something other than exploring creative sarcasm on here and self help guides for parents who fail to engage their frontal lobe, it's a work in progress (so please acknowledge copyright). It's a perspective which denies logic or reason; it requires an intuitive being, not lost in what is right in front of them, it is a connection, a love so powerful it requires silent moments, hard decisions and sometimes loneliness. Why anyone would want to settle for something that feels ordinary or fits the criteria is beyond me; when you could have something that moves mountains.
I leave you with part 1, following a short history on love & a wish that may you find the love dreams are made of, may you take today to love with all your heart, to remind yourself what you seek is right inside you all along; like a beacon to another soul, let your heart guide you xo
Happy love Day people xo