We at mobileWOMEN.org found that this Valentine’s Day sparked it’s usual passion but also this time, it sparked a passionate conversation regarding love and relationships. It all started when one of our contributors found herself among a group of single mobileWOMEN, discussing the viability of marriage when having a disability. These women conveyed that they didn’t know any other women that were married and weren’t even sure if marriage was a possibility for them.
After a few of us discussed creating an article about marriage, we realized that there are many dimensions and aspects of love. Marriage wasn’t necessarily the only road to happiness and love comes in many shapes and forms.
Fortunately, our mobileWOMEN team members have broad range of circumstances when it comes to relationships and love, so each of us agreed to share our experiences and thoughts on the subject. We decided one article was not enough to cover this complex topic so we have created a series of three posts based on the following:
Part I - Relationship Status: Different Perspectives from our mW Team
Part II - Looking for Love: Tips on Finding Your Significant Other
Part III - Celebrating Love in All Forms
We hope that you will enjoy the series and share it with others that you feel may find it beneficial. Ultimately, our best resource is one another so please share your thoughts on our Facebook page. We are so grateful for all of you. Let’s embrace the support that we can give each other and the love felt within our community!
In this post, we are covering the third post of our "love" series:
Part III - Celebrating Love in All Forms
We asked our members the following questions:
a) Love isn't just about romantic relationships. Where else do experience love?
b) What do you do to show yourself love?
Love comes in all forms. Not just in the relationship you have with your significant other. You can find love in your relationships with others, be it with your children, grandchildren, friends, pets, God, etc.
Love is around us in our environment. I sometimes feel a sense of love (maybe joy or peace) when I see a beautiful sunset or find myself in a beautiful place. It's important to slow down and soak up those moments or experiences. Love must really come from within ourselves to be able to feel it and share it. That's love for me.
I experience love in all sorts of ways - through my son, my pets, and hobbies (like photo albums and scrapbooking). I love cooking (I'm a foodie) and so making something challenging and having that "food network bite" is amazing. Great conversations with friends and family is the epitome of love to me. Love is really connecting to life, seeing the good in people wherever you can, and witnessing people doing good in this world with all of it's challenges.
I'm a bit of a Type-A personality, so I show myself love by having a bit of a self-spa day on Sundays. I'm an ambivert (equally extroverted/introverted) so I definitely make sure I feed my introverted side -- if I do not give myself solitude to read, watch a film, or meditate, things get really frazzled and anxious. I also give myself a break from the mental chatter, too (meditation) and try to reroute any negative self-talk towards positive affirmations or a quick account of what has worked versus what hasn't.
I certainly feel love through my family, my friendships, my coworkers, the love I have for my residents and even my pets. I have made friendships through travel and even having a moment of interaction with people, can create a special feeling of hope, moving forward.
A few ways that I show myself love, is through the passions that I have such as dance, travel, writing and meditation. Meditation has helped me to learn to show love, acceptance and compassion for myself by embracing my insecurities and imperfections. I think showing love to one's self is being open to other people no matter their diversity. Just as long as they return that love whatever it may be in return, that openness is so important when having any kind of relationship with others.
I experience love with family--our children, parents, siblings--as well as close friends.
I enjoy looking forward to fun events in our lives and doing so is a way to show oneself love. Treating myself to a manicure, buying something cute to wear, or even planning dinner with friends are other ways!
There is love in all different parts of life. There is the love from and for your family. There is also the wonderful love you get from close friends. Even the love of your pets. All these loves can be very fulfilling and don’t have to come from a romantic relationship.
There are many ways to show yourself love. I love to get my hair done; that always makes me feel good. I like nice clothes and pretty jewelry. So those are nice ways of pampering me. You don’t always have to spend money to show yourself love. You can do that by doing things that you love, Reading a great book or cooking a wonderful meal. Just sitting outside on a beautiful day and enjoying nature.
First off, I experience love being a mother to two grown sons. They come to me for advice and share their daily journey. Our oldest son calls me every day on his drive home to talk about his day. They did ask their father for his opinion prior to his passing and now they ask me. We are very open as a family and we are well aware as to how short life can be. I also experience love and comfort from my 2 dogs. I can’t imagine my life without them.
I show love by being polite to others. I say “please” and “thank you” and I love the interaction of others. I listen, actually listen, to others and communicate effectively. It has caused me to love myself and speak freely from the heart without hurting others. I like to share “life lessons” in hopes of helping others. From a very young age, my goal has been to help others, hence becoming a nurse.
I experience love with my close friends and family and of course, my adorable pets. Within the past couple years, I lost my golden retriever, father-in-law, two brother-in-laws and then my sister which was devastating. Those losses reminded me of just how precious life can be and the importance of all my relationships.
Since my accident, I have made it a priority to take care of myself so I try to take time every day whether it be exercise or splurge on a facial or a massage even when things are crazy. As I age, I realize the need for calmness and peace so my goal is to learn meditation but even something as simple as sitting outside and enjoying the sights and sounds of nature, is rejuvenating.