What is true love? Can a person live most of their life and not really experience true love? Can a person be married for over 20 years and not really understand love?
Love presents itself to us the moment we are born. The second we meet the touch of a parent. We are at risk from that moment on. We long for the connection with another human being. That longing is what drives us to cry out for touch, for eye contact, for communication that we matter, we are noticed and we have value.
Value. How do we learn to value ourselves? How do we learn to value others? Are some more valuable than others? Is there a standard or starting point? And who determines that standard?
Could it be that we have “value” accounts and all through life there are deposits made into our value accounts. By the same token if deposits can be made then so can withdrawals.
The journey of life. We start walking, talking, growing and expressing ourselves. We notice who gives us value, who loves us and we want more. We gravitate to those who are tender, genuine, nurturing and strong. We develop interests and work out our talents. We grow in knowledge and understanding and we form opinions about others, life and our purpose on this Earth. We don’t even notice that our “value” account has grown. We just feel strong, mature, beautiful and free.
We are new to the concept of withdrawals. It does not feel right. We begin to experience fear for the first time. We feel out of control and powerless. The safety and security of our value account has been threatened. The alarm goes off. We want protection, comfort, rescue. We feel shock and shame. We make a choice to hide. Our value account has been robbed.
We turn to those who we know will make deposits in our accounts and we start to cling to them. Something is different. We feel needy and empty. We feel like there is a hole that needs filling yet it is never filled. We turn to anything that alleviates the pain and trauma of our soul. We develop pattens of behavior that cover and protect so we are accepted and seen. Our beauty is our safety net. It brings us value. Others notice. It is a given. So we work really hard to maintain that beauty. It works for a long time. Until there is another withdrawal from the “value” account and beauty won’t fix it. In fact, the withdrawal is so big, the account is bankrupt. We had been in such a rigorous rut of trying to protect our “value” account that we had neglected to accept deposits or even make our own deposits. Now we realize there is nothing left. We are not children anymore. We are grownups with families of our own, marriages and careers. We have already lived half our life and we are bankrupt.