I have generally not been a sports fan in life, but living with my husband for over 20 years and raising two sons has trained me in the importance of “the game”. Tonight we shared a real loss as we watched the dreams of our star quarterback slip away with an injury to the knee. He stood on the sidelines watching his team lose their chance at a national championship. This is the game of life we watched play out; the winning and the losing that defines our lives. I always tell my boys, especially after they lose, that you can’t ever win if you can’t risk losing. The losing is what makes the winning real.
We can never imagine the full range of possibilities that can befall us in the games we play or the relationships that we live in. By default our imagination is limited by our experience and we shape the future pictures of our lives by what we hope will happen, rather than what could likely happen. It is often the thing that you couldn’t imagine, that you often don’t see coming, even when it is barreling down on you like a linebacker, that ends up to be the defining moment. Not being able to accurately predict our future and the outcome of the game, is what makes life so exciting and risky.
Recovering from loss takes great courage, especially when it happens on ESPN. The young men on the team will come home today and figure out how to try again. They will have to be willing to take the risk again. Losing in private, when no one else is watching is not a lot easier. Finding the courage to try again in the game of relationships, careers or athletic endeavors depends on our ability to access our heart’s memory.
It is through our heart’s memory, the place where we remember gratitude, that we find that what we have is enough and that we are enough even when we fail. When we experience gratitude for both our own efforts and the efforts of the people around us, we can come back from our losses with courage. This grace is the energy that is able to turn denial into acceptance, chaos into order and confusion into clarity. Using the heart’s memory is what champions do after defeat and I think the only sustainable path to live a life that gives as much as it takes. We realize that having the chance to play in the game is enough, even when we are left with less than the golden win.
This is the week we set aside to be thankful for the gifts of life and well being that is so easy to take for granted. This year consider being thankful for your heart’s memory – the inner store of loving thoughts and connections that has given you the courage to keep going. Communicating your love is the essence of gratitude. And gratitude is the essence of turning a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a day into a celebration of thanks.
We give thanks for the community of support and love that we share with all of our customers and friends. Please send this to your friends and invite them to join us at Good Clean Love, where we work every day to Make Love Sustainable. Use coupon code GCLNF07 for a 10% discount on any of our love products.