Thursday, March 21, 2013

Your Greatest Love...Part Two

People of the world tell me this - who (or what) is your greatest love? For those who missed Part One, you can read it here. For those who have been patiently waiting for me to get my shit together and share Part Two, let's get tucked in shall we?

I've shared this poem before, and now I'm going to share it again. I'm quite certain one can read it 57 times a day and not grow weary of it. It was written by Kahlil Gibran, published in 1923, and it goes as follows:

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you, yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts.
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,

which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,

and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer's hand be for gladness;
For even as he loves the arrow that flies,

so He loves also the bow that is stable.

We all arrived through someone. Our childhoods may not have been perfect, but that’s not the point. As it relates to love, our families were our first teachers, for better or for worse. Some had a stable bow, others did not. Here’s the thing though, about love – regardless of our own upbringing, it’s up to us to willingly bend in His loving hand and send forth strong arrows. The children of this world deserve nothing less - neither do you. Love each other fiercely, so we grow to be stable bows.

It's the most noble thing we can do.

Here forthwith, are the remaining responses for your greatest loves.

This has varied throughout my life, however at this specific point in time it is my husband and two beautiful children. You do not realize how children change you – they become an irreplaceable part of your life. I always heard that having children is amazing, but it is far more than that.

My greatest physical love is my family…husband, children, grandchildren, siblings, parents both deceased, my extended in-law families. My greatest mental love is God and my greatest spiritual love is Mother Earth.

Me. In the past I did not believe or trust in myself which led to a lot of mistakes and heartache. Discovering that the power of the universe is within me has created a love for myself, the people around me and the world.

Perogies with salt and full fat sour cream, freshly baked white bread, a sleeping child perfectly molded into the crook of my arm early on a Saturday morning and kissing the plump, soft underside of a baby’s cheek.

Hair and music.

I love freesias. I think it’s one of the most beautiful smelling flowers.

The land.

Music, pets and art.

My relationship with Jesus…then my husband and son.

This would be a toss-up between my husband, grandmother and stepmom. I love them all so dearly for so many different things. My Spice Girls Greatest Hits CD and Sound of Music DVD come in as close seconds.

My husband - the daddy of my little girl and my best friend.

That would be a three way tie – my husband and my two kids. Tough to say who I love more – my kids or my husband. My kids will move away and I will need (and I want) to spend the rest of my life with my husband. Amazing to say that even though we’ve been together for so many years! Having said that, sometimes watching my kids is like having an out-of-body experience. They are ‘me’ but walking around separate from me – I don’t know if this is captured well in writing! How can you not love you? OK – so not ‘you’ but you?

My greatest love is a man I’ve known for years upon years, but only recently and inadvertently got to know. His belief in me took me through the trajectory of fully knowing myself.

My life partner.


Nothing remarkable about this answer: my sweet little family of my husband and two lovely, hilarious daughters. Not that I don’t also love my big crazy extended family, I certainly do, but the truth is that despite belonging to a very large family, I’ve spent most of my life feeling like an orphan. That is, until I built my own little clan who taught me what it is supposed to feel like.

My puppy.

My daughter.

My Dad.

My kids, my husband, writing.

My greatest love is God, for without him we don’t have love. He truly is the only one we can count on through rain and shine.

Mommy and Daddy.

Music. It can lift your soul, comfort you when you need it. Singing lifts your heart and sometimes lyrics hit you in the gut for how it’s so fitting in your life. It can inspire. Bring people together and I really believe it has an energy all on its own.

My husband is my greatest love. He is my yin or my yang, whichever I need him to be.

My God. Second to that, my family.

My greatest love would have to be my families. I consider myself to have my blood-related family, and my extended families of friends and coworkers. I do not know where I would be without these people in my life – I wouldn’t be where I am today without them.

My daughter. Is that a fair answer? She’s the only person on this earth I would die for in a heartbeat. Her Dad was my first real love, and the only man who asked me to marry him and I guess he gave me my greatest love, so he’s right up there too.

Gratification from accomplishing a goal.

My greatest love is for life and new discoveries…sharing something new with special friends, riding along and seeing a beautiful waterfall and wondering where its source begins.

My son.

The wife and kids. The great non-person loves are jazz, basketball, reading and writing – a four-way tie.

My greatest love is myself. When I get to feeling something less than love for myself, that is when I start treating the most important people in my life poorly. I think because when I feel that I am not deserving of their love, I subtly push them away. I dare them to leave me because why would they want to be with me anyway? To thine own self, be true.

Wow…that’s tough. Is it me? My Mom? God? Life?

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