Thursday, February 16, 2012

On Love, In Love, With Love

Love seems an obvious topic this week.  It was Valentine's Day on Tuesday.  Biggest love day of the year!

And now it's over.  

The grocery stores are filled with carts of pink and red things at bargain prices.  Better go now so you can stock up on your heart-felt, glittery treasures for next year!

Okay wait...before you stop reading because you think this is going to be a V-Day hater post, it's not.  Far from it, actually.  I LOVE love, and I love celebrating it.  I think it's just my disgust of commercialized holidays eeking out.  Moving on....

I love Valentine's Day.  I've never been one of those bitter women who hate it because they don't have an "other" to call their own.  I've been single on all but 1 of the Valentine's Days I've been alive for, but I've never hated the holiday.  It had always just been a day to celebrate love in all it's many (MANY) forms.  But Valentine's Day came with a lot of firsts for me this year:

  • First time I've ever had a "real" Valentine (unless you count that time in 4th grade where my orchestra buddy dropped a box of chocolates and a paper heart-shaped pouch stuffed with valentines on my porch and ran)
  • First time (in my almost 27 years) that I've had a Valentine whom I absolutely adore 
  • First time I had a message spelled out on the floor in chocolate-caramel kisses
  • First time my Valentine has ever showed up at my place of employment wearing electric pink tights and a superhero cape (still laughing about that one)
  • First time I've ever felt so much love for somebody.  Ever.  I never knew this was possible.  It catches me by surprise most everyday.

Love has been on my mind a lot lately, probably because there is so much of it.  I never knew my little heart could feel so much, and it's not just romantic love.  It's LOVE.  
I just love.  
I love the guy at Smith's that stocks the produce and always smiles
I love the cat outside my window that lurks in the bushes and chases birds
I love my plants
I love my coworkers
I love the sky
the mountains
my little leaf tattoo
the lady I bought a table from this week
my fellow bloggers

I just feel so much love.  And I was asking myself what the difference is.  Why, in the past couple of years, do I feel this way?  Why am I exploding with love for everything?  I've been in relationships before.  I've had "stability" and "acceptance" and, and, and....

I've concluded that there is one major difference lately (lately being the last 2 or so years, and there are a few differences I could point to, but this is a major one)...I LOVE ME!  I have finally learned to love myself just as I am.  Finally.  I don't have to be uber talented or stick skinny or loved by everyone or accepted by my family or independently wealthy or in a relationship.  I just have to be me.  And once I learned to love myself, it allowed me to shift my focus outward, to share the amazing amount of love I felt (and there is an amazing amount of it to be sure).  Self-love has made everything else brighter.  My relationships are sweeter.  My plants are greener.  My love is...reder....

I wish I could give you some magic answer for finding self-love, but it will be different for everyone.  It's part of your own unique journey. But I will say this: it's okay to be selfish.  You're not going to find self-love by focusing on something outside yourself.  Give yourself what you need (time, space, vacations, chocolate...).  Listen to yourself.  You best know your answers. 

Moral of the story:  The key to happiness is loving myself.  So you should all love myself, too.  Oh no wait....that's backwards. :)

It all comes down to love
It all comes down to love

It all comes back to you
It all comes down to love

It all comes back to you
It all comes down to love
It all comes back to you
It all comes down to love

-Janet Jackson


  1. I LOVE this post. As I was reading through your comments I got to the list of things you love and I when I read your line about loving your fellow bloggers my heart literally skipped a beat. I don't know why but the warm fuzzies that are still washing over me are making me smile more genuinely then I have in ages. Thank you for your self love and for loving me by extension. I honestly believe you!

  2. Good, MJ. Believe it, because I DO love you. For real. And I've got a lot of love to give. Explosive amounts, really. Better watch out.

  3. This is a really nice, uplifting post. Thanks for sharing your love!

  4. Agreed. This was a way uplifting post. I'll admit I'm a hater on Valentine's Day but I love your outlook on it :)