Monday, February 14, 2011

Love doesn't always look like this

Though love need not be highlighted one day of the year, I appreciate this Ode to Love day.  Love deserves to be Oded to.

When I was young, February 14th meant elaborately handmade cards from my creative sisters, the perfectly chosen store-bought card with just the right words for each of us from my dad, a pop-up Disney Valentine from my aunt, See's Candy from my parents, and an out-to-dinner family evening.  In my teenage years, it meant the same, plus Add-On loneliness and while unnecessary, it was what it was and I wrote in my journal and felt more alone than the rest of the days.  Then, there was college and at the end of my time there, I met my first and only Love and he cooked me the (now-favorite) bow-tie pasta dish with broccoli and Italian sausage that has evolved to include cauliflower, too, and always always makes me smile.

Today at work, there are people donning hearts on clothing or jewelry, an excessive amount of chocolate and flood of red and pink (never a good color combination), Valentine's Day Bake-Off results, pretty but sneeze-inducing flowers sent from lovers or mothers, and a heightened sense of romance (or for some, merely arousal).

But all that means little to me.  For me, an Ode to Love is an Ode to the beloveds who have taught me what love and sacrifice and joy are.  It is Brittany, Jason, close friends, a warmth of spirit, an authenticity, and little notes to be tucked under doorways for friends to find.

The Greeks refer to four types of love.   Agápe (unconditional or brotherly), Philía (friendship), Storgē (familial), and Eros (romantic).  I do not identify one type as more significant than the others, rather, they are all love and all love is meaningful.

Happy Ode to Love Day, or Valentine's Day, or February 14th, or Monday.

{polaroid:  love doesn't always look like this}
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