It’s an easy word to say. I love that dress. I’d love to come over. I’d love it if the New England Patriots had kicked some ass. But really, what is love?
I’ve been considering that question with Valentine’s Day upon us as I wade through a barrage of images everywhere I look of things to buy to prove my love. Godiva. Swarovski. FTD. Every kiss begins with Kay. Should I buy champagne? Go out to eat? How do I show my love?
When I was in school I’d be on pins and needles as we passed out Valentines, having sat up the night before to address messages to my classmates like: “I go bananas over you!” via crazed, dancing monkeys, or a smiling drone in a busy hive: “Bee mine!”
One year, a boy I secretly loved casually dropped a Hershey’s chocolate bar on my desk along with the little white envelope. I could hardly breathe.
But love is like that in all its forms. Torturous. Breathless. Bittersweet when it fades. But also enduring. Constant. Reliable. Fun!
We want to be loved. We need to be loved. Simple as that.
When I look at my life I already see love everywhere. In my sweet husband who would take his morning off to rotate the tires on my car or change the oil instead of something he wants to do.
In siblings and parents who over their lives faced and overcame great adversity but still reached out to help when needed, because they knew, and know, that that’s how life works.
In my kids who are working to sort out their lives and become who they are meant to be. And in friends who choose to be with me at my worst, as well as best, offering support, encouragement, and caring always.
Not every day is sunny with hearts and flowers. Sometimes the people we love are really sort of unlovable. But I still count my blessings and in the end, as I look around this Valentine’s Day, I feel content knowing I already have everything I need.
If that isn’t love, I don’t know what is. Oh, and as for the gifts? There’s always Christmas!