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Tue 25 Jan 2011 In: Our Communities View at Wayback View at NDHA

A four-letter word applied to everything from chocolate to your job; from your granny to your car; from your favourite shoes to your partner. Chocolate and shoes aside, love is a much more complex element of humanity that can cause as much joy as it does confusion. ‘Love' is perhaps one of those words we apply liberally because we have a fear about it being absent in our lives. To love and be loved is up there on the basic scale of human need, there is no denying it or hiding from it. The reality is that we all know love, sadly for many we just don't always recognise it at the times it matters most.w What does it mean to love? Is it more than a passion for a new outfit? Is it more than waking up next to the same person and sharing the rhythm of life? Do we define it as something deeply personal, or do we let those around us shape it for us with their own expectations and definitions? We are told in so many ways how people show love, but we are not all the same. Love can be expressed as a kind act, a listening ear, a gentle touch, or a bunch of flowers. But all of these things can be given and received without ‘love' being part of the equation. Love is probably a compound of many things that as individual acts or thoughts may not say much in themselves; but when assembled together provide a feeling and emotional connection to a person that goes beyond a momentary act or fleeting thought. A mistake we often make is to expect that we can find all of the love we need in just one person with one kind of relationship. Our capacity for love is not limited, and therefore our ability to receive and show love should also not have narrow boundaries. It leads us to new places, excites, stimulates, amuses, and encourages us. It can fool, hurt, challenge, reject, anger, betray and frustrate us. But all of it, good or bad, in balance is what makes us alive. It does not matter where that love is found, it is not up to other people to tell you how to experience it. All that matters is that we recognise it when it comes along and remember that to be human is to love and be loved. When all else is said and done it is how we show and experience love that will enrich our lives. It is in the moment when we shed a tear or share a laugh with a friend that we really see love for what it is: simple and beautiful. - Vaughan Meneses is the General Manager of OUTLine Vaughan Meneses - 25th January 2011    

Credit: Vaughan Meneses

First published: Tuesday, 25th January 2011 - 6:13pm

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