This morning I thought about love. I thought about the feelings we identify as love and how we sometimes give these feelings so easily to another but fail to give them to ourselves. I wondered how and why we get love so confused and why it causes so much ecstacy or agony. I also think of the feelings of anguish when we feel love is taken away or manipulated in some form or fashion. We are told someone is supposed to love us til death we do part and nothing is supposed to change. We are not expected to grow. We are expected to see another as the one to make us happy and whole. Many of us begin to feel in order to love we must own. The object of our love should belong to us and we should belong to them. We forget to give some love to the one who needs it most, ourselves.
Self care is self love. Unfortunately in the arena of love there are those willing to take without the desire or the ability to give. In our need to feel love, we often give away our power to those more than willing to take. It often leaves us feeling depleted knowing something is wrong but lacking the ability to see the problem. We lose track of us while living a life that truly is not ours. We become emeshed feeling that if we truly love we must give our selves completely to another. We see us through another’s eyes. Self care and self love is the ability to recognize when it is time to take care of our mental, physical and spiritual needs. It is the ability to recognize when we need a break, a rest, a vacation or just to say no. It is the ability to see ourselves as whole and complete individuals.
Authentic love is not one sided. In order to love we must be vulnerable and willing to let the other see our wounds and we are witness to theirs . Often in the early stages of lust or infatuation, we convince ourselves that this is love. We are high on the aphrodisiac of lust. To love deeply and truly is to want the best for another without the need for retribution or hurt when we feel we have been wronged. Love can bring confusion and sometimes can get ugly. It is a difficult thing to mix the human ego with what is supposed to be “unconditional love.” We use the term of “unconditional love but do we truly possess the ability as humans to love another without condition or do we snatch our love away when one does not conform to our standards? To love another without condition is to love them as they are even if we are unable to live together within the confines of a home or relationship. We are able to offer our love, comfort and care and acceptance all along maintaining our own personal boundaries. We offer a hand, an ear or a shoulder. To love another without condition or judgement is a difficult task for most of us. We often seek revenge and hold our grudges until we feel justice has been served. We become the judge, jury and executioner all in an effort to coddle our hurt egos. We must understand that only through loving and putting our best self forward are we able to meet others on the path towards understanding and genuine full love.