I’m always on the fence about Valentine’s Day. On the one hand, it is a good grand gesture opportunity for those who want or need it. On the other hand, I don’t think over-the-top displays of love and affection should be reserved for just one day.
But I participate. And so does my husband. (I suppose I’d really find out how I feel about it if he didn’t.) So this year, we’re taking advantage of the long weekend and having a staycation in nearby San Francisco. But before we go, I’d like to share my thoughts on love.
Love isn’t something that’s just between spouses or couples. It can be between friends and, obviously, family too. I’ve used the word itself as inspiration, since today is all about love. So, here it goes. This is what love means to me:
L stands for Loyalty: /ˈloiəltē/ a strong feeling of support or allegiance. I’m not just talking about being loyal, but staying loyal. Our loved ones need to know we always have their backs, even when their backs are turned – and that they can count on our faithfulness and support at all times. Loyalty creates that safety. It contributes greatly to maintaining a no-judgment zone. Loyalty reminds us that our loved ones mean well, and that we do too, no matter the circumstances.
O stands for Openness: /oh-puh n/ not closed or barred at the time. In love, we can’t be closed off in our communication or in our willingness to let others open up to us as well. When we shut down, we create shaky ground under those we cherish. We leave too much room for doubt and speculation. So we must push ourselves to be as open and as honest as possible. Because when we do, we connect to the truest and deepest parts of ourselves and others.
V stands for Values: /val-yoo/ to regard or esteem highly. We all have our values and the things we won’t budge on. But it helps to remember that everyone else does too. So mutual respect for values is incredibly important in love. Someone who loves you wouldn’t make you compromise your values for anything or anyone, especially them. Likewise, we have to stay true to who we are too. With the right love, this is actually the easy part.
E stands for Everything: /ev-ree-thing/ something that is extremely or most important. Love is everything. It can overcome anything. It ties all the other pieces of this and life together. Love creates the potential for joy through truth, compassion, kindness, forgiveness, and more. It can make us the absolute best version of ourselves if we let it. Love to me is one part passion and one part choice. Even if they’re not in equal parts, both aspects exist in every loving relationship.
So this is my idea of love. It’s matured as I have. It’s meant different things at different times as I’ve developed as a friend, sibling, daughter, and wife. And now I want to hear from you: What does love mean to you? Leave me a comment and let me know. Happy Valentine’s day to you all!