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Love All of Me

"From understanding eventually comes forgiveness." – Jay Vickers

"It is good to be bold enough to love with an open heart and brave enough to risk being shattered in the process." – Mary Seyuin

      Understanding and acceptance are essential in creating and maintaining lasting love. If we don’t commit ourselves to these pursuits in our relationships, not only do we miss out on personal growth, we miss out on experiencing a lasting love which continues to grow deeper.

      Too many couples wind up building walls between them, one brick at a time. These bricks are made of resentment and the mortar is lack of forgiveness. It comes from the failure to practice understanding and acceptance as we wind our way through the difficult courses of life. Much easier, it seems, for us to have high expectations, blame and let anger turn to resentment, than for us to stop and seek understanding of self and the other. The big problem: the easy way does great harm.

      It is easy to love the good qualities and delightful attributes of another person…those things which add enjoyment and greater ease into your life. The hard part is to love when the inevitable imperfections appear. We all have faults and make mistakes. How we handle them changes the very quality of our lives and our relationships. I greatly appreciate a sentiment from Thomas Fuller (1608-1661): "He that cannot forgive others breaks the bridge over which he must pass himself; for every man [person] needs forgiveness."

      It takes courage to be vulnerable instead of defensive in relationships; It takes courage to ask instead of demand; It takes courage to be respectful when angry; It takes courage to respect the other as a separate person not seek to control the other; It takes courage not to prove myself right as I justify hurtful attacks; It takes courage to be open and honest; It takes courage to be able to endure pain when a loved one does not meet a want or need; It takes courage to love despite being hurt and in the process of working through this hurt.

      I look at mistakes as learning opportunities and people as trying the best they can with what was given them. It is good to be bold enough to love with an open heart and brave enough to risk being shattered in the process. Sometimes it is only from being broken do we arise from the experience much better and stronger and more capable of loving self and another.

      Love’s strength lies within understanding and acceptance. In love we grow and find deep satisfaction in this most difficult of journeys.

            -Mary Seyuin, M.A. LLP