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Penny Thoughts: Love is...Appreciation

I think it was in episode 8 of Downton Abbey Season 6 that Tom Branson gave this ponderous thought to Lady Mary Crawley: "Love is giving the other person the power to hurt you." One often knows that love comes with the feelings of excitement, burning passion or adoration, extreme fondness, joy, happiness, and all other good emotions. But, love, if it is to be real and sincere, is to be more than those.

Love is Appreciation. It is appreciating the best in someone when you're experiencing the worst of him (or her.)
If you love your mate and family only when they are lovable, how different are you from other non-spouses and non-family members? No one is perfect and if you're only out to love someone for the good and not for the bad, that is basic and common love.

Love is Appreciation. It is recognizing and enjoying the good qualities of the ones you love.
It's not so much as being blind to their faults as much as being mindful of the good they are and the good they bring into your life. It's never losing sight of the ways they complement and complete your life.

Love is Appreciation. It is understanding your loved ones' capabilities and limitations.
It is being aware of their limits and not over-expecting things from them. It is not demanding perfection or conformity especially when you cannot consistently provide that yourself.
It is discerning their capabilities and passions and setting them free to act and grow where they find joy and fulfillment in. We must understand that what we want may be different from what our loved ones want. And though they may not always share in our hopes and dreams, we can find a way to accommodate each one's pursuits without competition or neglect of one or the other.

---photo credit to dimitrisvetsikas1969


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