Ever notice the difference between timid love and intentional love? That feeling when you just want to breathe in the other person. When the collective makes you feel so alive and willing. Just willing. It’s a fiery feeling.

If you’ve ever felt it, you know what I mean.

When you love on purpose, you are simply… open. And honey, it makes no nevermind if the person you’ve chosen to be open with is the right person for you. When you pour love into someone, the flood hardly apologizes for the rain. And the same goes for the energy you will get back, in return. Good, bad, or indifferent — when you love wide open, you invite it all in.

For the better part of 2014, I was involved with a person who I cared for deeply. Sometimes, even I didn’t understand where the intensity of that love came from. We just meshed. We could pendulum swing back and forth between being social butterflies, running the town. Or recluse into a shell of us-ness — just laying in bed all day, stuffing our faces and watching tv.

He was not a bad person, however, there was a degree of toxic behavior that occurred between us. He had a way of setting off many of my fine hair triggers. Hurt that was deeply felt — an attack on the very delicacy of my nature. We came to a screeching halt in a way that made absolutely no sense. But in many ways, it was so obvious. And then, it was quiet and I was alone.

But now, the window was open. And accountability had the opportunity to blow in and get cozy. And I got cozy — with myself. Retreating. Abstaining. Praying. Writing. Taking time to explore myself. Getting to the heart of the matter. Making a teachable moment out of what felt like a rug being pulled from under my feet. And now, a year later, I feel myself in such a new space, spiritually. And the transition feels utterly foreign but so savory because I’ve been able to be selfish with myself. And the power that comes in the the midst of silence, stillness and self gratitude is phenomenal.

Those moments when you can just look at yourself and understand what you need. And just work to claim that!

And knowing that even when you feel small, the truth is, you are not. And it’s ok to retreat on an as-needed basis, to regroup and replenish your faith. My goal, moving forward, is to be in a constant state of self acceptance and self satisfaction. Even in moments of hopelessness and struggle, I want to cling to my testimony and my process for peace and stillness. I want to rest easy in my decision making, in my emotions and in my faith.

I won’t understand every moment. I won’t have everything I think I should have. But I will decorate my life with love and compassion. I will be patient with myself as I work through whatever chapter of healing I happen to be covering or revisiting or discovering. I’ll be ok with who I am at whatever moment, even if I need to transform.

I’ve learned so much about myself through my relationships with other people. Who they allowed me to be. What I allowed myself to become through loving them. And while I may not be proud of every twist and turn, I appreciate who I am because of them. And that acceptance is a much needed peace for the heart and soul.

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