By C. Mali Phonpadith
© 2009

Sometimes love finds us and we simply aren’t ready…we don’t see it for what it is. When we don’t believe – we don’t feel like we have much and therefore, we always lose. It doesn’t have to be this way.

I have convinced myself in the past that timing is everything- this is true. But you can’t time love. I’ve learned that twice in life. You can’t choose whom and when – you just feel it- you know it without understanding how to explain it! It hits you and the beating can be so hard – it knocks the wind out of your lungs. I have held deep romantic love a couple times and in such instances, there were moments when I felt that I could not breathe and moments when I believed I was floating on air. How powerful – how painful and amazingly beautiful! I have been told by many that I have lived a blessed life…to have found deep and real love more than once in a single lifetime!

Somehow, I believe them.

Who knows why loving someone cannot be an isolated incident- why we can’t bottle it up and seal it in a plastic jar to carry inside our hearts forever. Everything about ourselves, our thoughts, our views of the world, must change and therefore, so do our emotions and our beliefs as it pertains to love; as it is willed by Life.

Who I was, has carried me to who I am and thus will glide me into the person I will become. Our beloved will morph into someone different from the person we first laid eyes upon. The question is always whether or not both parties can accept such changes – such growth – and commit to loving ourselves and the other person regardless. Otherwise, we cannot argue with nor take prisoner another person’s heart – they have the right to love and leave as they please…as we do.

There is no perfect picture of love – there is just love.

I am also convinced- although others may argue- that real love cannot be discovered until one has an opportunity to lose it – perhaps for a little while- perhaps forever to the Universe. How do we know to appreciate anything without understanding how it makes us feel to no longer hold such things in the palm of our hands?

I have met elders who have shared their stories of love; their losses; their new discoveries. Many have found their way back to the one person in their lifetime that loved them most- that understood their existence- that always made them feel at “home”.

I have also met others who tried to find their way back but each step led them only to beautiful memories that they must learn to cherish forever. Both types of stories do not have horrible endings…either path have always lead to new beginnings.

It is never about going backwards – always moving forward and letting the road reveal how winding and abstract our lives were designed to be. For most of us, we will love, we will hurt, and we will love again. That’s the wonderful thing about our capacity, our defense mechanism, our need as humans to always feel valued. Somehow, we survive all our painful experiences, and we continue to love- not always romantically- but always wanting to let love enter and give it another chance.

Loving deeply, sincerely, and honestly is rare and being loved in this way in return – even more unique to find. You will know this kind of love because it will feel like no other before nor after.

Perhaps many of us will discover that deep romantic love has already come for us and we simply weren’t ready. Perhaps with some reflection, we can see it for what it was. We can believe that it existed, that it was real and that we have been blessed.

It is possible, that this kind of love may come for us again…maybe by then, we will be ready.

Mali Phonpadith is a real gift to our world…thank you, my friend!

Rock on!

Misti Burmeister