The beauty of Christmas break is time to think, to catch up, to reflect – which is exactly what I have been trying to do. The second week of December had a bit of a rough start, but it was a starting point for all the reflecting I’ve been doing. I also am super sentimental, and love looking back over the past year to see all the ways I have struggled and the ways I have grown.
Though certain occurrences in December have proved to be challenging I have seen the fruit of choosing love. I spent the beginning of this week reflecting on sisterhood and the gift that it is in my life. Ok – hear me out here — not so long ago I was that girl who said that she hated hanging out with women because men were just so much easier… but in a few short years I have experienced the goodness of sisterhood. I’ve seen women understand one another and choose to love one another, and love them well.
My good friends — no, all my friends, know that physical touch is a way I give and receive love. One of my sisters is really good and loving people well, in the way she knows they receive love. Example – last time we spent time together we were sitting on my bed chatting and she would just touch my arm or my leg or something just because knows that I receive love well that way.
My roommate knows that I love getting little notes (or small gifts, the types of things that you buy for a friend because you see it and immediately think of them) But with that simple notes that say I’m thinking of you can be really important too — anything that reminds me I matter to someone. When I had a particularly rough day I woke up the next morning to my roommate having left a note on my prayer chair (because she knew I would find it first thing in the morning).
These are just two examples of ways I’ve experienced women choosing to love me well. These are two examples of why I’ve realized relationships with other women are good to have.. no, necessary to have.
But the thing is we live in a world filled with busyness and building up of thyself. It is countercultural to have deep relationships, especially with women. Tonight we had a women’s night with about 30 women aging from college students to moms with 4 kids at home and all the stages of life in between. We talked about sisterhood. About the importance of sisterhood and the challenges of it and the joys of it.
One of the challenges we face as women is our insecurities. We are so often concerned with what the other person thinks of us that it prevents us from loving well. We fear being over-bearing. We fear coming off as too much. One of the things that was said tonight that struck me was “so what. so what if we love too much“. Yes, yes, so much yes.
In my circle of friends I’m becoming known as mama bear, with a mama bear heart. My greatest desire is for people to know they are loved, they are wanted, and they are enough — especially women. But anyway, I’m known for my big heart. This article was circling facebook this morning http://www.puckermob.com/lifestyle/an-open-letter-to-the-girl-who-loves-too-hard — and my friend told me I was the first person she thought of when she read it (if that helps you picture me and my self-perception).
So I was thinking about all these things – a big heart, sisterhood, love, and choices. Just like the article says people are frugal with their love in our culture. It is a choice and a risky one at that, to invest in relationships. It is risky to bear your heart to someone. It is risky to spend large amounts of time with the same person or people. But it is a choice and a risk worth taking. Love, relationship, sisterhood, it’s a battle, but it’s a battle worth fighting for.
(If you’re still reading I’m almost done…)
Mother Teresa said: If you love until it hurts there is no more hurt, only love” Now think of the other quote I shared so what if I love too much…
If we make the choice to love “too much” we make a choice to make the world a better place – a little warmer, a little softer, a little brighter. What a gift it is to get to choose to love.