Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Love Is All You Need

Remembering Those Who Have Never Forgotten You

Recognizing and Appreciating Your Loved Ones


Hello Fall !
This past weekend has been a learning experience for me. It was my Fall break so I had the opportunity to spend time at home with my family as well as an old friend who I hadn't seen in a while. I have come to realize that we must never forget those who love us and care about our well-being. I have spent a lot of time on this blog (probably too much time) discussing the encounter with my friend. Thankfully we have been able to talk about everything a little more and at the end of the day I am happy that I had the opportunity to see her and even grateful for the resulting confrontation. It reminded me of times when she and other friends dedicated a great deal of time to helping me, visiting me in treatment, and even putting me above themselves in certain situations. They showed great love for me and although we have not spoken in a while it was unfair for me to forget the kind actions, loyalty, and mostly importantly love they have showed for me in the past. 
Love Actually (2003)
Similarly this weekend enabled me to remember the unconditional love that my family has always expressed to me both in their words as well as their actions. I was lucky enough to spend true quality time with my parents as well as my aunt, uncle, and cousin this weekend and it served as a reminder that I must always remember those who have never forgotten me. I feel as if too often I get caught up in my own life here at school that I fail to recognize and show appreciation for these people who only want the best for me and will do anything in their power to help me. It is unfair for me to forget about those who have never forgotten me. My parents would go to any length to make sure I am happy and healthy- visiting me at school whenever they can, providing with money for meals, calling to check in, and listening to me when I need a sympathetic ear. My aunt, uncle, and cousin even made the drive up to Boston last winter when I was in treatment just to see me even though I was unable to leave the unit. They travelled a total of over 12 hours to see me for only a total of 6 hours during visiting hours. They would do anything to see me, protect me, and most of all show me how much I am loved. The past few days have been full of negative situations and personal anguish. I spent so much time focusing on the bad in my life that I failed to recognize all the positives, the loved ones that surrounded me, and the overused notion that love is all you need. Well this statement can be easily refuted I believe it does carry some truth. If we can appreciate and recognize the love that surrounds us, the people who care about us no matter what, and always remember those who have never forgotten us than maybe the negatives will begin to fade. They will never disappear but perhaps they can seem less important. Lets allow the love to outweigh the hatred or negativity. By concentrating on this love maybe we can begin to believe that love is all we need in order to find happiness and meaning in our lives. Again today I had a difficult time choosing just one quote that reflects the point and theme I am trying to communicate so I have chosen many. Bear with me as I offer you numerous quotes that help express the statement I am trying to support: Love is all you need.

These first two quotes attempt to define love and I think together they form a relatively accurate and all encompassing definition-

"Love is the condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own."

- Robert Heinlein

"Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit."

- Peter Ustinov

Also from the movie, Love Actually
I think in my personal case both of these definitions more than apply. My family merely wants me to be happy and healthy and if I am neither than they are unable to be so. I believe that the second quote applies to me and my life although my family may disagree. I feel as if I have constantly been letting them down, burdening them, and forcing them to think and act in certain ways that they wouldn't have ordinarily. I hate that my illness and unfortunate situations have impacted them and the way they live their lives. But despite everything I have done they love me none the less. They always forgive me for my mistakes or disappointments. They may become angry or frustrated with me but their love never wavers. They will often not even admit that my actions require an apology or need for forgiveness (although I find myself apologizing none the less.) I consider their love for me as Ustinov says "act[s] of endless forgiveness..." I am thankful for this love, this forgiveness that has become natural, and their willingness to care about me despite my faults.
The next quote I wish to share with you discusses the healing power of love, an element that I wish to pay a bit of attention to-

The healing power of love-

"Love cures people- both the ones who give it and the ones who receive it."

- Karl Menninger


I can say that this quote rung true for me this weekend. Being surrounded by my loved ones allowed me to see the positives in my life and helped me to get through a difficult situation. Loving words, a kind gesture, a huge hug is able to warm our hearts and helps us to realize that life is worth while even when bad things may be going on around us. Likewise the act of loving another person or thing grants a with a sense of purpose and fulfillment. Love is all you need is a bold statement but it speaks to the power of love and its ability to impact humanity. When we feel loved by another human or even a pet we are able to put aside sadness or anger we may be feeling. Love is a strong emotion (maybe the strongest of all emotions) and experiencing it allows other less powerful emotions to dissipate or at least fade away momentarily. 
The final quote I have chosen to share you with is straight forward and directly supports the point I have been attempting to make over the course of this lengthy post. Perhaps I should have said it at the beginning and saved you all some reading because it truly says it all-

"Love one another and you will be happy. It's as simple and as difficult as that."

- Michael Leunig

Lets try to do as Leunig suggests. Lets love and allow ourselves to be loved. If we do this than happiness will follow. I will try my best to focus on the love in my life rather than focus on any negativity that I may encounter. In doing so perhaps I will come to believe that love is all I need in order to find happiness in my life.

Love and be loved,
xo



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