by Wendy Strgar June 22, 2018
I don’t know who wrote this, but I know that it is true when love is applied to our relationships and we understand how they constitute the fabric of our lives. As I have written many times before, in the last moments of life, the only thing we remember – the only thing that counts at all – is who we love and who loved us back. The rest of it, all the achievements, education, winning and losing – we realize this is just what we do every day.
Giving yourself to your relationships and prioritizing them over the needs of your own personal development and career path is the struggle that most of us face every day in raising families, reconciling with parents, and coming back to try again after our heart is broken. It’s a messy business loving people, and sometimes when the fabric frays between us, we think it is easier to walk away and give up on those we have invested in with so much heart.
The thing that we miss out on when we give up is cultivating our own greatest strength. The Buddhists revere the space that opens behind our broken hearted-ness and teach it as a path to enlightenment. The moments of Bodhicitta when we are swimming in our own grief and sadness exposes us to this most tender true space that defines our humanity unlike any other emotion. In sorrow, we can see clearly the space that our heart can encompass, we get to feel beyond our own experience into the heart of compassion.
The most amazing part of this expanded form of loving is how it frees us from our fear to love more. Compassion shows us that we are never alone with our broken heart. What’s more, by allowing ourselves to feel more, we learn to trust our own courageous heart to love more. No one wants a broken heart, but there is nothing like not being afraid of it to throw you into the deep end of love.