Gloria Ornelas Hall
Learning to Love: Be thereWe have each other to hang on to. In these times of uncertainty, where institutions, religion, family and social structures are breaking down, we have each other.
To love is to be there for one another. My parents taught me that. No matter what we’ve done, how we’ve differed or how far we’ve roamed, they have always been there for us. In life or beyond, such loving gives us structure and faith.
Cells grow an inner cytoskeleton to give their shape inner strengthen and make them locatable and dependable for cohesion in tissues. We have to develop inner trustworthiness to be there, for others. It requires generosity to give when we have enough; self-denial to share when others are in need; patience to listen when we are tired; strength to always back our loved one and side with him even when he is wrong. Loving requires walking alongside our lover; to be there for him when he needs us. It´s not about carrying him, or having him, carry us. It is about holding hands and giving a helping hand when asked.
Our loving may not be mutual and it may not be fair. We differ in needs. For some of us, selfless loving and patience come easier than for others, bound to more materialistic demands. It should not deter our loving, much as parents who, though more evolved than their young ones, still accompany them along their growth. We are not the same. I learned that the hard way, when, as a medical intern I helped give birth to an anencephalic baby. The fact that an innocent newborn was unjustly bearing such a physical anomaly, shook the very basis of my belief in divine justice. I realized that the notion that we are all the same, is totally false. Some of us are fat, young, ugly or more or less intelligent. Some seem more evolved in loving than others. Whatever the explanation for our differences, we must continue learning how to love. It is not about what we do, but about why we do it. We can continue doing the same thing we do daily, but evolve to spiral doing it with different intentions:
- Our eyes first have to learn to see; then observe; then discern and identify right from wrong; to finally overlook wrong and choose to see only goodness.
-Our mouth has to learn to talk; then learn to keep quiet; then speak the truth; and finally speak only kindness.
-Our ears have to hear; then listen; then filter gossip and negativity; and finally choose to tune into harmony.
- Our hands, in balance, have to give and take; develop justice and compassion; then generosity and gratitude; to finally unite in prayer.
- Our feet, in balance, have to first stand up, take a stance and confront a problem; then, have fortitude to take a step, always in balance with prudence; then, develop tenacity to try again, always with patience; and finally, to walk alongside to accompany our loved ones.
- Our heads have to think; then understand; then comprehend; and finally be wise.
- Our heart has to feel pleasure; then accept pain; then forgive and finally love.