Wanna Be My Valentine?
As Love Day approaches, I thought I’d share a few thoughts on the L word, L-O-V-E, with you. I’m no expert on love but I’ve learned quite a bit about it the last few years. I’m simply a woman (sister, daughter) that has been through a heck of a lotta dates–I could probably write a book by now. And if I were keeping score, let’s just simply say I’ve won some and lost some. One in particular that I lost- I still think about. The others I forgot about the next day, hehe. Through these dates, I’ve learned how to love unconditionally. I’ve built my strength by breaking down my walls (defense mechanisms, etc.) and I’ve learned so much from each date that I’ve been on. I try to look on the bright side of each date and past relationships to focus on what I learned about love, men, what I want and what’s gunna make Amie happy.
I’ve also noticed how many people rush into a relationship for the wrong reasons. So, if you’re a late relationship bloomer like myself—no worries if it takes you another few years to figure out what you want or how to be in a healthy loving relationship. I do know one thing for sure– I hope I have a loving relationship like my parents have…after 30 plus years of marriage they’re still happily in love and so adorable.
Men that broke my heart wide open taught me that when I really love someone, even if it may hurt, I don’t hold back. I also learned that solely through being honest and vulnerable can you have true intimacy and love.
Everyone that’s come into our lives is a teacher- they help us wake up, recognize and understand who we are, what we want and help us evolve further in our journey called life. They’ve come into our lives to open us up to the deeper truths in each of our beautiful lives.
Anyway, back to what I’ve learned about love- then we’ll move onto a little loveable recipe, k? Keeping an open heart and being thankful for all your relationship experiences (and all they’ve taught you) will show the older, wiser YOU why loving yourself if the most important thing. Ever.
So, here it goes.
-Put YOU first.
Yep. That’s right. Put yourself first. Fall in LOVE with YOUR life. Remember that YOU are YOUR priority. My illness has taught me this–it was a blessing in disguise. Be brave- watch funny movies, bake cookies, dance in your kitchen, go to the park- take a new yoga class- join a hiking club. Learn how to enjoy YOUR own company. Life’s too short to loose your identity in someone else’s world.
-You have all you NEED.
It’s not someone else’s job to make you feel love or be able to love. Nope. That’s up to you to love and accept yourself as you are. When that’s your base, you can let your love shine like the sun!
-We’re NOT perfect.
I totally gave up on the idea of being perfect. In my 20’s I tried to do things to make guys interested in me- then I woke up one day and was like…what the heck am I doing? I HATE golf…why am I telling him that I like it? Ha! After years of beating myself up, not feeling like I was good enough, special enough, smart enough or skinny enough, I have learned to give up on being perfect. This, my friends, is the opposite of failure. I’ve learned how to be more present, experience each moment with myself and others to it’s fullest.
-Listen to your GUT.
Some guys or gals look great on paper (trust me–Manhattan is notorious for this)- but know the difference between right for you and what sounds good on the outside such as their job, salary, Park avenue apartment, etc. Learn to listen to your gut and what feels right for you. You want a relationship that makes you feel comfortable-not one that you can’t be yourself.
-A partner adds to your Life; they’re NOT your life.
Don’t rely on someone else to make you happy. That prince on the white horse is just a fairy tale unless you truly are happy with yourself and you love yourself unconditionally. Surround yourself with amazing people–friends, family, etc. who feel your soul in many ways instead of just focusing on one person to make you happy. You’ve gotta make yourself happy before you can find someone to LOVE.
-I can’t FIX Everything.
I’ve let go of the notion that I can solve every problem, every man, every situation and myself. This makes us lose focus on listening to our hearts. When we let go of feeling like it’s our duty to solve everything and fix everyone, we open new doors to accepting things the way they are.
-Create free time and SPACE in your life.
You need breathing room, space, time, etc to think, cry, heal, meditation, practice yoga, go for a walk, take a bath, or whatever else it is that you need. Sometimes all you need is to let go and give yourself time to get through a difficult phase of life.
-It’s never too late to LOVE.
In my 20’s I felt as though something was missing. Every wedding and holiday I’d hear “How is Amie Valpone still single?” UMmmmmmmmmm- I DON’T KNOW people, but thanks for asking. Ha. All I’ve learned is that teaching ourselves to love ourselves is an ongoing process that doesn’t matter if we’re 85 or 21. Love develops and grows- especially when we give ourselves love, acceptance and kindness instead of judgement.
Have fabulous L-O-V-E Day and dive into these quick no-bake cherry oatmeal cookies that can be made in a snap. Enjoy the journey of loving yourself exactly as you are—whether you’re in a relationship or flying solo, like moi!
Try to buy everything organic. Here’s why: The Benefits of Eating Organic.
- 1 cup gluten-free rolled oats
- 1/4 cup ground flaxseeds
- 3 Tbsp. raw shelled pumpkin seeds
- 2 Tbsp. chia seeds
- 6 Tbsp. almond butter slightly melted
- 3 1/2 Tbsp. honey
- 1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
- 3 Tbsp. dried cherries chopped
- pinch sea salt
- large pinch fresh orange zest
- pinch cocoa powder or cinnamon optional
In a large bowl, combine oats, flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds and chia seeds; mix well. Set aside.
Meanwhile in a separate bowl, combine slightly melted almond butter, honey and vanilla extract; mix well to combine then transfer to the oat mixture and mix well. You may want to use your hands to get everything mixed evenly.
Add dried cherries, sea salt and orange zest. Add cinnamon or cocoa powder, if desired.
Roll mixture into small balls about 1 inch in diameter and place in the fridge until ready to serve.