I forgot. I forgot what love was. I forgot myself.
I've been living small, and didn't even know I was living small.
I named this blog Open-Hearted Life to remind me: an open heart leads to connection, connection leads to healing, which leads to deeper connection. I know where deeper connection leads me: deep peace, true love, knowledge of Source, living in the flow and the light. And my living there helps others see that you CAN live there - not only is it safe, it's life-giving and fun and vital. So maybe, just maybe, it'll move them to open their hearts a bit more, leading to more connection...
I can trick myself into thinking I'm living an Open-Hearted Life... well, no, wait. It's not a trick: I am living an Open-Hearted Life, to the best of my ability. When I stop what I'm doing, and listen to my kids, really listen: turn away from the computer, make eye contact, connect, hear them. When I stop what I'm doing to sit with Seth and watch while he plays a video game - not because I love the game, but because I love him, and he wants me there. When I ride the bus, and silently send love to everyone else on the bus, directly to each person. When I call a friend even if I'm afraid I'm not going to like what she has to say. When I won't let go of my cash at the grocery store until the cashier looks at me in the eyes, so I can look her in the eye and smile. When I connect with someone while giving them reiki. When I pray for someone. When I pray for myself. When I take time to cook Evan a warm lunch, even though he could do it himself or make a sandwich, because warm cooked food says love to him. When I teach someone who's afraid to, how to hit a drum. When I stand in the center of the drum circle and conduct the flow of the rhythm. Open heart, open heart, open heart.
But, there are places I close up. Like the animal flower - get too close, and poof! I'm gone. It's hard to stay open-hearted when I'm feeling vulnerable -- but I think that's the point of the practice, to make me vulnerable.
So - there's a man. Finally, after four years of being single, not wanting to date, not being particularly interested in anyone: a man. And he's beautiful. And funny. And present. And he's about service to others, and giving. He lives his life dedicated to the greater good, not the ability to shop. And he's beautiful. Did I mention he's beautiful?
And he's married.
Damn it! Married. Not just married, but married with healthy boundaries. And, oh, my heart has been aching. Why? Why him? Why now? Why couldn't I have just stayed in my little cocoon of singledom, not wanting to venture out? Why the connection?
You know how, when you're falling in love, and you're happy, happy, happy, and the colors are brighter and everything's connected and you love, love, love the world? Well, this wasn't like that. This was... sad. And slightly desperate.
He is on my mind a lot. I try not to let my mind go there, I try to honor the vow he took with his wife, but, my mind wanders... SIGH OK, mind - back to work! Stop it, just stop. SIGH
I want to touch him, whenever we're near each other. Arms "accidentally" brushing, a hand on his arm when we talk. We were at a workshop together, and he was standing behind me, talking with someone else, and I could feel the heat of his shoulder on my back. I baaaarely leaned back until we were touching. My heart leapt.
I need help.
So, yesterday, yesterday, I was answering e-mails, trying to get caught up (ha, ha), my mind was not on him AT ALL. When I write, I'm focused on what I'm writing, even if it's a simple e-mail. It's the way I'm wired, even if I write something in a card, I have to get away, focus, connect. So: I'm writing this e-mail for work, then out of the blue, out of the ether, my heart breaks open. I feel SUCH love, from outta nowhere. Love in a bright light, right from my heart. And I see his face, and feel that love... and realize I forgot. I forgot what love even was. True love, unconditional love.
Love is acceptance. Love remains open-hearted, even if you're not getting what you want. Love gives, without expecting anything in return.
I was not loving this man, I was wanting him. And in that flash of light-filled love, I saw that. And let it go, all of it - the fantasy, the naughty thoughts, the desire to touch.
What's left is desire for TRUE connection, open-hearted connection, where I can love and accept unconditionally. Where I don't need him to be a certain way, or be anyone else other than who he is, a married man, with healthy boundaries. Our friendship, our relationship, may need to look different than it has, for me to honor those boundaries and his vows, but that's OK. That'll be OK.
After this epiphany, I clicked over to read 37 Days, and read these words: Love as if you will be answered. Love as if you will be answered. Yes. That's the place to live from, to love from. And I read the lyrical post there, and I cried. Cried from the beauty of it all, and from being lonely, and from having found this beautiful man who was married, and from getting the reminder: Love anyway. Making the choice to love anyway.
And I went around my day, and I was happy, happy, happy, and the colors are brighter, and everything IS connected, and I love, love, love the world. Truly and honestly.