The Opposite of Love
I am small, tiny, in comparison to the vast expanse that is the universe. Even our own home planet is huge, filled with billions of souls, making their way through life. I am only one among many, a solitary person clacking away at a computer keyboard, trying desperately to chronicle this experience, writing of all that I think and feel. Sometimes, it seems a little self- indulgent. And I am sure that folks get tired of yet another blog post from the sick gal. But I am motivated for some compelling reason, hopeful that something I write might make a difference to somebody reading it. But it is more than that. I selfishly want to remember every single moment of this journey, to leave my thoughts behind for the generations who follow, babies who would never know me any other way. And that makes this an intimate legacy, I think.
I have always had ideas about life, philosophical mumbo jumbo that means nothing to anyone but me. And in spite of my foolishness, I like thinking about such things, especially now, when I have the time. I lie in my bed, my mind wandering to the “what ifs” of being, having long soulful talks with God. I have moved past the bargaining stage, safe in the knowledge that He who created the universe has already planned my life, determined my future. Placing a bid on my existence seems rather futile, and I have happily moved into acceptance. It is a peaceful place to be.
We have been given many gifts by a benevolent God, the greatest of which is love. It is a message repeated to us over and over again, as though we need to hear it echoing through us until we believe it, feel it, know it. And yet, we live in a world which seems out of touch with the beauty that accompanies abiding affection. And this is what separates us from all that is good and holy.
Our world is ordered into opposites. Day turns into night, youth leads us into old age. If there is to be joy, it is often tempered with sadness. This is the yin/yang of life. And so it is with love. If you ask people to describe the opposite of love in one word, they will instinctively say hate. But no, to hate means to feel in an equally passionate way, the physical sensations rattling in our bellies. A better answer is apathy. When you no longer care about the health, safety or well-being of another individual, when he or she no longer enters into your thoughts or prayers, you are existing in that place which conflicts with love. But I think it is more than that. For me, the opposition to love is fear, the overwhelming panic that comes to us when all is out of control as we try to swim though the maelstrom of uncertainty. Fear blinds us, paralyzes us. But more importantly, it tests our faith, challenges what we profess to accept as the truth. To eliminate fear, we must believe and trust, giving in to the power of God, floating through the rough waters of the tempest, confident that we will not drown. Yeah, that. But when we can let go, when we can rely on help coming from a greater power, we open up ourselves to miracles. I know this for sure.
There is something about expressing those fears that provides a respite from the pain, a bit of relief from the never-ending uncertainty. And as I have discovered, this begins the domino effect of healing. With each post, I seem to get stronger. Isn’t it true that unrecognized emotions suppress the immune system? Even the Bible tells us that a burden shared is already halved. And so I am grateful to all of you who have stepped up, held my hand and made me strong. Thanks.