Love You - First

I returned to school in 2016 to further my spiritual journey and become a Reverend. The courses covered an array of ways to connect with the Divine, how to be ‘heart centered’, coming from a place of love, when interacting with others, among a myriad of other topics. One particular exercise that we did has been on my mind for a bit. We sat with a partner, and starting with our partner’s name, repeated the phrase, “I love you” to the person sitting in front of us. I am certain my explanation does not do the exercise justice. Sitting, in front of someone, looking them directly in the eye, listening to them say (in my case) “Natalie, I love you” - over and over - was quite moving. In fact, after the exercise was completed, there wasn’t a dry eye in the class. It became obvious that hearing, “I love you” touched upon deep feelings within each of the students.

Why was it so moving to hear those three words - “I love you”?

I believe that wanting to be loved is at the very essence of our being...it is the force that drives us. From the time we take our first breath we begin searching out the comfort and love from our caretakers. We continue our search for acceptance - and love - from family and friends throughout our lives.

Our hearts, our souls, hold many memories of love received as well as lost. The deepest scars that define us and how we interact with others, are those of love not reciprocated - of our ‘broken hearts’. Think about it - your own personal journey - how love, the search for it, the joy of receiving it, the pain of losing it, has defined your choices, your life - who you are today.

Reflecting upon this search for love and acceptance - how it affects us - has taken me on quite a journey. Do you know that you can indeed die from a broken heart? We all know people that have ‘hardened’ their heart (because of their experiences searching for love) and are bitter, negative people that are not ‘fun’ to be around.

Our health is directly affected by how we feel. Lack of love, of acceptance, of a sense of belonging, can lead to a plethora of health issues.

Daily we are bombarded with ways to bring ‘love’ into our lives through online dating, using the ‘correct’ style of clothing, makeup, etc. We are continually sent the message that we need to find our ‘other half’ our ‘soulmate’, someone to complete us.

What happens when we meet that other person, bringing all of the wounds inflicted from our past lost love with us? We ask them to accept us, broken - we are operating from hearts filled with memories of hurt, of betrayal, of what went wrong before. Is that fair? Finding our ‘other half’ - someone to ‘complete’ us is just ridiculous. Better to be a solid, whole person, having dealt with our past, and finding someone to compliment us. What type of person will be attracted into your life if you, yourself, are not healed and whole?

Our actions, the patterns we follow, are influenced by the memories our subconscious holds. Every single relationship, every single interaction we have with others, our thoughts, our feelings are all based upon what has happened to us in the past. If we allow ourselves to recognize this and begin the process of healing ourselves - of, dare I say, coming to love and accept ourselves, we will, basically effortlessly, begin to heal current relationships as well as attract new loving relationships into our lives.

Yes, from the time we take our first breath we begin searching out the comfort and love from our caretakers and yes, we continue our search for acceptance - and love - from family and friends throughout our lives...but, what if, along the way, we directed that search inward...we began to love and accept ourselves?

If we let go of the mindset that love comes from a external place, if we find peace within ourselves, if we become a ‘whole’ instead of a ‘half’, we will heal our heart wounds as well as elevate our physical health.

Healing begins when we look upon every experience as teaching us what we want, or don’t want, in our life. Experiences should not be qualified as either ‘good’ or ‘bad’ - they just are - they are what has made you - you. Experiences, lessons, memories have a purpose - learn from them - explore the feelings you had with them - and then let them go.

We should not choose to inflict our past lessons upon the present or future set of people in our lives.

Choose to love - you. Choose to love and accept yourself first and foreformost. When your foundation is solid many, many healthy, loving relationships can be built upon it. You deserve it!Heart

May God Bless Your Journey -

Natalie