Love Is…

While sipping my lukewarm coffee and hoping my daughter takes a long nap today, I think for a moment about Valentine’s Day. My first thought: Thank heavens my kid’s kindergarden class doesn’t require cupcakes or homemade Valentine’s. My second thought: I wonder how to celebrate, reflect, and expand love today. 

I’m not that interested in receiving chocolates or a teddy bear holding a heart from my husband. I’m celebrating Valentine’s Day by pouring love into people around me. And embracing the ways I am experiencing love. 

Love is taking a deep, long breath while my two kids fight over a toy for the twentieth time, and embracing another moment to teach them about kindness.
Love is connecting with a friend who is struggling through depression and fatigue, and hoping and persevering with her. 
Love is cooking dinner for our family, and keeping our nightly ritual of eating together. Even if it’s a brief moment that is shared over a meal of chicken nuggets, it’s still something good. 
Love is my unborn baby squirming in my stomach, and feeling such gratitude and awe for this little person. She’s being welcomed into a very love-abundant family. 
Love is my sister-in-law texting me to recommend a book to me, and asking how I’m doing. We’re an ocean and timezone apart, but our friendship still thrives and I’m thankful for her. 
Love is my toddler snuggling up to me, requesting to read Elephant and Piggie again. As I read it to her, I make sure to deliver the dialogue with gusto that would make my drama teacher proud. After I finish, I breathe in my daughter’s scent and mentally capture this passing moment. 
Love is rounding up another load of laundry into the washing machine so our family has clean clothes to wear. 
Love is listening intently to my son as he talks about his favorite part of his day (getting a cookie) and his least favorite part of his day (when Kyle bothered him in the lunch line). 
Love is enjoying a tear-inducing, belly-aching laugh with my husband before we drift off to sleep. 
I may not be “celebraing Valentine’s Day” this weekend, but I am celebrating the abundance of love that is coursing through my life. 

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