It was a beautiful, yet warm, June afternoon, 9 years ago. I walked into the old church and saw my nephew near the alter looking as handsome as ever. I strolled up to him to check in and asked if he was nervous, as he was waiting for his bride. His words sit with me still. “Not at all, this is the most sure I have ever felt about anything and anyone.” I smiled, knowing that he was right. There’s is a love that you see whenever you are with them. They are kind to each other and listen. They are committed to their marriage and then their family. The couple and the respect and love come first; similar to my parents’ and both my brother’s marriages. Commitment is first to the couple, then to the family. Love is not about romance and flowers (although it is nice to see that from time to time), love is about patience and understanding. It is about respect and compassion. It is about humor and fun. It is about caring no matter how angry you may be at the moment, the moment does not define the marriage. It is about always working together, not seeking something better when the going gets a little tough.
For some of us, this type of relationship has eluded us. For me, the cost of that elusion has been questioning myself, am I not good enough to be loved like that? What I have learned is I needed to love myself more first, honor myself first, be compassionate with me first in order to attract that love. I don’t know if I will or I won’t attract that love in this lifetime but I do know that I love myself much more today than ever and I don’t harbor the self-resentment I once did.
I have also learned that love comes in all sorts of ways and from all sorts of people. This new moon that we just celebrated was about relationships and really focusing in on our inner circle. Who lifts us up? Who drains us? Who are we connected with that supports us in where we are going versus where and who we have been? Who remains in that inner circle because of our need versus the love that we share?
As I gave thought to my inner circle during this moon, I asked myself a few questions, so I can really understand the relationships that have been a part of that inner circle. Am I hanging on because of what they used to mean? Are these really building and fueling relationships or do they keep me stagnate or questioning myself? Are there some that I will not let go of but need to recognize where they sit in my life versus where they may have once sat? None of these are easily answered as all relationships are complex. I have found that in my life there are but a handful of people who are there for me no matter what. They check in, they show up and they care. I hope the feeling is mutual. Some relationships change so much that perhaps they are no longer part of the inner circle. For me that doesn’t mean I make a big deal of that and let them know they are no longer a part of that place in my life, it means treating the relationship as it is, not as it was.
Love is an emotion that should help each of us grow. Love is a feeling that allows for your mistakes, allows for your step back. Love is something that helps each of us move more and more into light. That love, the love of some family, the love of some friends, the love of people who accept you for you, even as you grow and change, is a special love that should be celebrated always.
Love is a way of life. Approaching life from a place of love allows us to reduce judgment, reduce disappointment and expectations. Love allows for us to see people in their best light and know when they are not their best, something is going on that is hurting them. We should not pile on, we should be compassionate. Love is also at times, a reminder to just be. You don’t always need to do. Whether it is self-love where we being is a way of showing that love to yourself, or loving another; sometimes we just need to be. It is not up to us to fix for people, very often it is about being there so they know they are not alone. I always think of Piglet, from Winnie the Pooh. Such a wise sage, he knows to just sit with Winnie when Winnie needs to figure something out. He doesn’t offer his advice, he is there as loving support.
We all could benefit from a Piglet in our lives. We all could trust in being a Piglet in our lives and just be there for someone. Keeping the love for someone is, to me, the greatest form of friendship I could ask for. I do not need things to be fixed all of the time, I do need people to only “be” there for me. To remind me I am not alone in the world, that is the gift of love that I hold so dear.
Keep the love. Be there for people in the way they need and hold their hand. Love and light will always guide the way.
Keep the love.