Read on how to enrich your life by purpose, i.e. to find depth and, a reason to get out of bed each morning, your own Ikigai.
Whichever side of the Valentine’s Day fence you are on, we can agree on this feeling about love – that it is love which makes the whole ride of life worthwhile.
It’s that time of the year! While a set of people are celebrating love with all their heart (and the necessary mush), some are enjoying the memes and harmless jokes about something they don’t believe in. And then there are some like me who are neutral – the ones who can laugh at the jokes and can also go “aww” at the lovey-dovey social media posts; the ones who are happy to celebrate the day of ‘Love’ and are also cool about letting it pass as just another day.
Whichever category you belong to, you cannot escape love in your life. It is beside you, within you and contrary to the conventional quotes and beliefs, it is not just a matter of the heart but also of the mind. Sometimes, when we witness a couple showering each other with gifts or celebrating an occasion like Valentine’s Day with much hoo-ha, we remark, “Oh such a romantic couple” or “They are the perfect couple”.
Well, when no two people are the same, then how can the relationship dynamics of any two couples be the same? So, if you never gift each other anything or if you do not prefer to show your affection through celebrations, you are still a ‘perfectly romantic’ couple with your own chemistry and synergy.
This Valentine’s Day takes me back to my first one with my husband when we were dating. I remember how I had a surprise planned for him every day for a whole week. I was putting in all the effort because I wanted to make him feel special. Cut to last year, our first Valentine’s day after becoming parents – we did not even wish each other, but it did not matter. No, I am not lamenting! I know that generally couples feel sad or grumble about having lost the ‘charm’ of the relationship over the years and they talk about rekindling the romance. But, that’s the thing – everything in life has a growth curve and a relationship cannot be status quo.
Every relationship trudges its own path and metamorphoses through various stages with time. After 9 years of marriage, I personally believe that neither does romance die nor is the charm lost. It is just that the way we perceive, express and feel love keeps changing. When my husband treats my parents like his own, I find it extremely romantic. When he supports me and encourages me to pursue my dreams in the creative world without worrying about the finances of the house, it is more stimulating than a kiss for me. When I see him being the doting father with my daughter, he seems so desirable and completely melts my heart.
The fact that I can bare my soul to him without any inhibitions makes me feel special. There is a quote that goes – “Love is not when you want to live with someone, but when you cannot live without someone”. I am not sure if I quite agree with this one. When life throws such a situation at us, most of us with time start to learn to live without those we love, because we understand that no matter what, life moves on. It is living with someone that is not easy, all the more in today’s world. I cannot imagine feeling at home living with anyone else except my husband, and that to me is a major indicator of genuine love and companionship in a relationship.
There is so much romance in being able to be yourself comfortably in a bond which does not actually bind or suffocate you, but rather sets you free. Love is not only in surprises and gifts or kisses and dates. It exists in the everyday mundane conversations and also in deep silences. It exists in cooking a meal together and watching one another’s backs. It is about lending each other a shoulder and being each other’s pillar of support. It is in laughter, tears, arguments and dreams. It is about respecting the one you love as an individual. It is in the mere presence of that loved one who makes your life beautiful.
Be it the innocent and unadulterated love of a child or the ‘butterflies in the stomach’ teen crush; be it the unconditional love bestowed on us by our parents or the unflinching love from our lifelong friends – love, in all its forms, is the essence of our lives, isn’t it? Did someone say that money makes the world go round? Well, I am sure, irrespective of whether you celebrate Valentine’s Day or not, you will agree that it is love that makes this ride worthwhile.
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First published here.
Top image created via Pexels
Multiple award winning blogger, influencer, author, multi-faceted entrepreneur, creative writing mentor, choreographer, social activist
Hi Anupama I liked this post because it is honest and real. I agree love in its many forms makes living worthwhile. A love between partners can be very comforting and wonderful because it is almost as much about giving as it is about getting- so it has potential to be a far more balanced and wholesome equation than other types of love. But, there are other types of love which are as strong and meaningful but the giving and getting equation may be unequal for longer durations of time – for eg parents love for children (especially when they are small and dependent)where giving is far more than getting. And then equation gets reversed between children and their old parents and children’s love may have to be about giving more than getting. All these types of love are beautiful -intense and satisfying too and must be celebrated because they define who we are and how much better we can become. Then there is the compassionate type of love that is only about giving those that can never give back- this too is a meaningful and generous love that must be celebrated-the love that people may show to another random stranger when they are down or out or have little or nothing to give in return -when people volunteer to spend time or effort (more than money) on someone “less”(in any way) than themselves to see them through a hard time. This too is a compassionate love that is worth celebrating. So yes I too agree, love is worth celebrating whenever it empowers us to think more about another and thus be better human beings for our fellow human beings and thus it does make the world go around and societies survive, to be happier places for all!!
I completely agree with you Sonia. You have expressed your thoughts so beautifully. Thank you for taking out time to read and comment on my post 🙂
I agree with Sonia that your post is very real, well-written and it resonates with many couples out there. Which also brings to mind, couples I know in their 50´s with grown up children in their late teens, who still take the efforts to celebrate Valentine´s Day in a special way…the wife dressed in a sexy red gown for her man, the man brings his wife red roses and chocolate..and they go out on a romantic date, all dressed to kill without their kids. And I think both are equally romantic. As you said, different people…no two couples are the same. Which brings to mind, Gary Chapman´s book ´The five love languages´. Anyway, Valentine´s Day, the world over is a celebration of love – all kinds. Children wishing their parents, grandparents and teachers…couples…It´s just another day to celebrate all your relationships.
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Thanks for sharing your wonderful thoughts Tina. Agree completely 🙂
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