I spent the last morning of 2018 writing the lyrics of an original song I penned along that year, for one last time. In 2018, I took the challenge of writing a song about the true meaning of love. It took me more than a year (and one teal Moleskine notebook) to complete it. Love is very complex – yet also simple. It can be hard to explain the meaning of love through song. But here we are – it is 2019. And I know people may have bore you with their own deep philosophical reflections about last year, but here is the ultimate lesson I would love to keep from 2018.
Love is a Choice
Many times in 2018 I have thought that I stopped loving my friends because I felt upset about the decisions they took, or that I felt helpless and did not know what to do to get them out of their struggles. I would not feel like spending time with my friends. I would not feel instantly happy when hanging out with them. Love was not giddy but instead anger, tears and frustration towards people closest to me. But if love were only based on what I felt then it would not survive.
Love is hard work. It is a sacrifice. It may only be showing respect. Sometimes it is a confrontation. It is being there for someone even when you do not want to. But when you remember why you’re there, that love becomes something beautiful – even amidst the pain. And the people worth loving show you why they are worth holding onto. But at times it might mean making a conscious effort to remind yourself why they are worth holding onto. Small actions such as giving rides back home, and making time for friends are also acts of love.
Despite love being at times sacrificial, it does not mean forgetting yourself in the process. It is not always about the other. Love is a choice you can make for yourself. It is not all about having a salt bomb bath to rest your mind. It is cutting yourself from people who do you harm even when they mean the world to you. It is letting people go if they are taking a toll on your mental health. It is telling your friends you cannot be there for them to get some time for yourself. It is making an effort to stop comparing yourself to others. It is allowing yourself to feel pain. It is acknowledging that pain, no matter how petty it may seem to you. It is choosing to think that you are worthy of love and happiness. It is bearing off pain and responsibility of external problems, particularly those of people closest to you. It is remembering that you are important too. You deserve your own love too.
In 2019, may we always choose to love others and ourselves. And maybe sometimes the latter is not all about feeling confident and beautiful. It may be about not feeling ashamed or guilty for the problems and burdens of others. Happy reading xx