Love Stories & Love Medicine
I was 24 when I fell in love for the first time.
Two days after Mark and I met, we were hiking and camping in the canyons and caves of the Utah desert. Our love was easy, fun, and playful. Smooth like butta’.
He had loved before, and knew the dangers of love.
I knew nothing of this kind of love, and entered the world of romantic love absent of fear.
Our love lasted three years. We traveled through the wilds of Utah and Montana as wilderness guides, trekked across Nepal and Thailand together, and ended up spending a long winter in Sandpoint, Idaho. When we left each other, we pretended we were just packing our bags and separating our belongings as we headed off to graduate schools in different states because we were unable to look each other in the eye and face the other kind of mystery: that even when there is love, you can’t always live, create, and thrive with the person you are making love with.
Love can be weird that way.
It took me five years to be willing to say yes to love again. Somehow I had gotten trapped in a room of fear of loss, fear of losing myself, fear of handing over my definition of self worth to someone else, and I couldn’t find my way out.
I didn’t understand that developing a relationship to Love was an initiation.
I had no context for making sense of the pain I felt.
I didn’t see how the pain I felt from this romantic love had tied itself around all the other kinds of core learnings about love.
I wrote a lot of tragic and complex love stories in those five years.
“My heart is broken.”
I said that years later to my friend Craig.
We had snuck out of a conference and I was sharing the woes of the moment as I spoke about another heartbreak.
“You mean, your heart is broken open?” he asked.
And with that one word, Craig showed me a door to liberating my story of love, and what it can mean to come into relationship with love– that with each loss, with each meeting with grief, there is a choice: allow the pain to break you, or to allow the rites of passage and journey of love and all that it brings, to allow the capacity for loving to become larger.
Ten years later, I ended up driving through the town Mark was living in. We met up for a cup of tea.
The most unexpected thing happened.
When we looked in each other’s eyes, Love was still there.
It had never left.
It wasn’t lost.
It didn’t die a sad and pathetic death.
Mark was now married and had a child.
I was quite content with the life I had created.
There was no desire or yearning to go back.
But the simple presence of love was with us as we sat at the table.
And I saw it: Love is a superhero in its way. Once created, it doesn’t die.
It can change form.
It can go underground.
It can get stuck in the past.
But all of that love we had made was still alive and well, with or without our continued union.
My story of Love was liberated for a second time,
and in that moment I realized that I hadn’t lost Love.
It was a much harsher reality to face:
I had thrown Love away because I had mistakenly believed it was attached to the person I created it with.
And now, all of that love… I had a way of belonging to again.
Mark and I parted after an hour, and we have not spoken since.
And yet the gift of that meeting has had a profound effect on how I relate to love.
I walked away understanding Love in a new way– not as an illusive entity I had to beg and pray to be in relationship with– but as a wiley character who does not travel alone and has a gang of friends and allies. You want to get down with Love. Sure, Romance, Ecstacy, and Sex enter the room when Love comes to the party. And so do Betrayal, Grief, and Loss.
And then the dance of life is there, saying yes, like really, a whole hearted yes to Love and all that it brings. It involves navigating the complexity of marrying an energy that comes with a lot of wanted and unwanted inlaws.
Valentine’s Day is such a loaded holiday, and if you choose to explore the history of this day you may question the choice to celebrate anything in its honor.
So for simplicity, let’s just say Valentine’s Day is an opportunity– like Mother’s Day and Father’s Day– to explore our relationship to Love itself. We can hop the fence of a consumerism-based holiday that feeds the craze of not having the fantasy, and step into a love story filled with people in all categories of life that allow the channel of Love to live through them.
Meanwhile, I’ll leave you with a memory of a hilarious Valentine’s Day when Love was present, but the gang of friends had taken over the party. It was Mark and I’s last Valentine’s Day together, and let’s just say things weren’t getting easier. I hand-wrote a very long Rumi poem about letting love go, and he got me a book for people going senile (since my memory issues drove him crazy). Ahh love.
The Story of Love as Initiation
Set out on a rescue mission to release The Story of Love from all of the stories that have kidnapped it and forced it to play a role far smaller than it deserves–until now, as we explore this story’s true nature.
Love Story Medicine Bundle
A Soul Story
A Love Medicine Story Meditation
A Soul Story “When Luna Spread Her Wings” + Worksheet
“When Luna Spread Her Wings” is a 10 minute recording of a Soul Story that is an expression of sovereignty. In addition, you will receive key questions to guide you through a process of discovering where you are living inside of this story.
How To Create A Medicine Love Story for YourselfThis is a 20 minute Guided Meditation that will lead you through calling forth a story. The Love Medicine you bring back will support whatever stage of relating to Love you are living within. This meditation will also provide some guidance on courting the Muse.
May Love be with you,