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If Friends Were Flowers, Don't Worry, I Wouldn't Pick You

I have to admit, I think "If friends were flowers I'd pick you" is a completely ridiculous saying. It's sort of like your friend is happily blooming somewhere and you are threatening to come around with the Felcos and stick her in a vase where she will quickly die.

A friend suggested to me that I should write about planting flowers. There are a staggering number of tie ins I could make between gardening and divorce, and I hardly know where to begin. Since we all start and end with love, I'll go there. Great, that makes three totally narrowed down topics, ha ha.

We are made of love, we come from love, we will return to love. Love is God, the universe, the essence of everything and we are all connected as one. As we grow and things happen to us, we somehow shift to a different set of rules. Here's the thing- those are the rules that have been pulled down over your eyes to blind you from the truth. In less Matrix-y terms, think about it this way: if you buy a Scrabble game and the rule book is missing, you can't go to your Monopoly game and get some.

We think that closing our hearts off is the best way to survive the "cold cruel world." Here is a news flash- closing our hearts is just that- surviving. You'll survive alright, but is that all you want to do with your life? My message is about living a life of joyous, boundless and unconditional love.

Who Do You Love?

Here is another news flash- it starts with loving yourself. So many people build walls after a hurt and then just keep adding on to them, building new ones, thinking that they will be insulated from pain. We think that letting down the walls simply means being willing to trust others again, which seems too scary. Actually, the scariest thing is not realizing that we've closed our hearts off from ourselves.

We've all heard the saying, "You can't love another until you love yourself." It is so true, but do we do it? I had so much going for me as a young woman, smart, funny, pretty, yet all I could do was find fault with myself. I thought being perfect was the goal, but quests for perfection are really just masks to keep people at arm's length. If I failed at something I would beat myself up over it and probably never try it again. Because I didn't know how to love myself, I looked to external sources of self confidence and happiness. Some people shop, some self medicate, some are constantly attempting to PR in their next bike race. A lot of people use others for the source by becoming energy vampires. You've got to suck the love out of somebody else to get some for you. (Get your minds out of the gutter, you know what I mean.)

I felt unworthy of love because I wasn't perfect. I'd try something and it wouldn't turn out quite perfect enough and then I'd be on the cycle again. Wearing a mask is exhausting, I didn't know then that being emotionally honest is so much easier.

Loving For Real

Perhaps I should have defined the love at the beginning- I'm talking about no holds barred unconditional love. Without expectations and without limits. You can love yourself that way, and I hope you do. I learned to. Extending it to others is a bit trickier. Maybe your spouse is a bit of a challenge, or you have a friend who is an energy vampire or your ex did the "unforgiveable." Sounds impossible to love people like that unconditionally, doesn't it?

It is. Pretty much.

What is not impossible is realizing that those challenging, poopy people are love too. They are just like you and me, love inside a physical body. It wrecks me to see people rejecting themselves by doing things that hurt others or that create division and not realize that the stone they are throwing is creating waves in the whole pond. Once I step back and look at how their actions are actually hurting them, it gets me to that place of compassion and loving kindness. It puts me in a place to extend grace, because I realize how much grace I have received.

Don't get me wrong, it is a journey. This isn't about reaching nirvana and sitting under the bodhi tree loving yourself and everyone else perfectly. (It is never about being perfect, right?) It is about realizing that love is a choice. That no matter what someone did or didn't do (or what I did or didn't do) love is the energy currency of the universe and I am going to tap into that consciously. I know that what I put out will grow and come back to me, bigger and brighter.

I'm working hard to finish my book, Love It Go. There have been a couple of revisions and then I decided to take it in a completely new direction. My mission is to help people get back to living their love out for themselves and seeing the love in others, however high their wall might be.

So how do I get back to gardening? Bloom where you're planted, or in my case, repotted.

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