“When you love people very much, isn’t it grand to be able to join in their happiness? Like everything else in the world, however, there is a price to pay for love, for the more happiness we derive from the existence and companionship of other human beings, the more vulnerable we are when there is any cause for apprehension. It takes courage to love, but pain through love is the purifying fire which those who live generously know. We all know people who are so much afraid of pain that they shut themselves up like clams in a shell and, giving out nothing, receive nothing and therefore shrink until life is a mere living death.” –Eleanor Roosevelt
As I was on Glam-ma duty tonight babysitting my two little grand-babies, Flynn (2 years old) and Magnolia (4 months old, all I could think about was how much I LOVE those two little ones. They own my heart.
When you love anyone with your whole heart, whether its grandchildren, or children, or a spouse, or a parent, or a sibling, or a friend…of course it makes you vulnerable…because loving means you’ve opened yourself up to a whole world of possibilities where your heart may be hurt at some point…perhaps it will even be broken… A loved one could be taken from us, a spouse might betray us, a friend will perhaps disappoint us….those are certainly the risks we take when we’ve opened our hearts to loving someone.
But what is the alternative? I mean, really? Not loving would be guaranteeing ourselves emptiness and loneliness…and isn’t that really the biggest heartbreak of all? Isn’t that the biggest price we could pay?
Whereas being vulnerable let’s our hearts actually grow in a limitless way, because our ability to love multiplies by the number of people we let in.
Sure the possibility of being hurt is a price we pay for loving someone. But the return on any love investment will always be a positive one because even if hurt does come, our hearts will already have multiplied and we will forever be better for it.
Don’t hold back loving in the fear of getting hurt – just LOVE!
~Amy Rees Anderson (author of the newly released book “What Awesome Looks Like: How To Excel in Business & Life” )