Thursday, February 14, 2013
A Post About Love
Today is the day. The day people will rush to buy candy, flowers, and make dinner reservations. The day single gals will watch John Tucker Must Die and light stuff on fire. The day I'll see the hash tag #myhusbandisbetterthanyours so many times I will want to throw up.
It's Valentine's Day. Now don't get me wrong, I don't despise the holiday as much as my first paragraph might suggest. I mostly just hate how commercialized and tacky everything can get. At times, it almost feels like a mockery of love.
Sometimes I miss the Valentine's Days of grade school. When I would carefully construct valentines for all my classmates. And if I felt especially brave, I would maybe sign the valentine to my crush with a LOVE, Kelsey. I miss the days of sitting in class on the day of love and listening to the teacher tell us the story of St. Valentine and how he was executed on February 14th long ago (Valentine's Day is slightly morbid if you really think about it). There was even one year I dressed up as cupid. So you can't accuse me of hating Valentine's Day, because I bet you never spent a day dressed as Cupid. My mom encouraged my idea, as she usually encouraged my crazy ideas, probably thinking her child was creative. Before I went to school that day, she helped me tie a white dishtowel around my jeans so it would look like a diaper. Then I proudly put my bow and suction cup arrows in my backpack. That day at recess, I skipped about and shot random people so they could fall in love. Occasionally, my longtime friends will still bring up that memory. "Hey Kelsey, remember that time in second grade when you wore a diaper to school?"
So see, I am not totally cynical. I dressed up as Cupid for crying out loud. And the truth is, I do love love. But love is much more than roses or a box of chocolates. It's much more than kisses and laughter. Love is also tears, heartache, sacrifice, and compassion. You can't wrap it up and tie it with a pretty bow. You can't make love seem perfect. Because a big part of love is imperfection. Despite the flaws, the blemishes, and the bumps, you have to have the heart to find beauty in all of it and accept it with open arms. Loving someone means you are even willing to love their ugly qualities. My savior, Jesus Christ, is the ultimate example of this. He loves me even though I am flawed beyond measure. He died for me because he believes in me, although I am a sinner.
With that being said, I wish you all a Happy Valentine's Day. I hope we can show our love to those around us: our significant other, our family, our friends. But most of all, I hope we can show love to those who might be lacking it in their lives. I hope we can try to love even those who are sometimes hard to love. I ran across a quote a few months ago and it quickly became a favorite. Each time I read it, I am left reflecting on myself and how I can more fully love those who need it. After all, we are all God's children. I will leave you with that quote. I hope it inspires you as much as it does me. . .
“I think you could fall in love with anyone if you saw the parts of them no one else gets to see. Like if you followed them around invisibly for a day and saw them crying in their bed at night or singing in the shower or humming quietly to themselves as they make a sandwich or even just walking along the street. And even if they were really weird and had no friends at school, I think, after seeing them at their most vulnerable, you wouldn’t be able to help falling in love with them.”