By Pam Asberry
Last night I sat in Miss Maggie’s cheerful kitchen, moaning as I nibbled on a hot buttered biscuit smeared with strawberry jam.
“How did I get stuck writing today’s PFHT blog post?” I sniffled. “I hate Valentine’s Day. I’m the only single gal in this crowd. What do I know about love?”
Leave it to Miss Maggie to set me straight.
I have been divorced for almost twelve years now, and it makes me crazy to think about how much of that time has been frittered away looking for the quintessential romantic love: all the awkward first dates; all the weeks, months and years I have spent in relationships there were destined to end in heartbreak and pain for everyone involved; all the Valentine’s Days I spent feeling sorry for myself because there was no special someone in my life to bring me candy, flowers and cards.
I have always been a sucker for the hype, for the grand gesture. But there’s romantic love and there’s just plain love, and it turns out I know a whole lot about that.
“If you constantly focus on what you don’t have, you will never be able to appreciate what you do have,” Miss Maggie chided. “Quit your whining take a look around. There is love in every direction you turn.”
It didn’t take me long to see that she was right. There’s my mama and daddy, my brother and his wife, my children and my pooch. There are piano students and writer friends and piano teacher friends and friends I’ve known such a long time I don’t even know where they came from. There are Facebook friends and Twitter friends and blogger friends, people I’ve never even met who reach out to me with affirmation and affection on a regular basis.
“As a matter of fact,” Miss Maggie continued, “the best way to feel love is to give love. Lots of it. To yourself and to everyone around you. It’s not fattening like chocolate. It doesn’t fade like flowers. You don’t need a postage stamp to send it. And the more you give, the more you get back in return.”
So that’s how I’m celebrating this February fourteenth: by pouring all the love I have in my heart over everyone I hold dear. It’s a long list. I’ll be way too busy to feel sorry for myself.