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I Love Because I Can

The eagle soars high because he can. The coyotes cry at night because they can. The cougar screams aloud because she can. I love as I have never loved, because I can.

Perhaps it's the feeling of having loved and lost. Perhaps it's knowing that love is worth risking all. Perhaps it's because of the struggles and trials I've had in my life. Whatever it is, I know that I risk nothing and yet risk everything to love another. Still, as I always have, my heart freely gives of itself.

There's always that chance that someone won't love or can't love in return. And yet, what is risked?

When a gift is given, it's not done with the intention of receiving something in return. It's a thought, a gesture. It's a way to show someone that we care about them, appreciate them, will miss them, or even that we love them. Why should it be any different with love?

Love is a gift. It's one of the greatest gifts we can give to another human being. It should never be given expecting anything in return, even for our feelings to be returned. If they are returned to us, it's a reason to be overjoyed. We have, in return, been given the greatest gift someone can give to us.

How does someone "give" their love?

It can be a simple gesture - a hand picked rose placed on the windshield of a car. It can be a picnic in the park with cold chicken and baked beans. It can be a bottle of wine with crackers and cheese on the table when coming home from work. It can even be a romantic comedy rented at the video store and watched in the privacy of ones own home, snuggled together on a cozy couch with a little dog licking at your hand.

How do you know it's love?

This paragraph remained empty for a long moment as I sat here trying to decide what I would write about this subject. How do you know it's love? How would I know just from being near someone if they loved me? How would someone I love ever know of my affections? How would anyone ever know if they were loved unless someone told them as much in plain and simple terms?

I can drop hints and clues with the best of them, but far too often the hints are cryptic and the clues are acres above the heads of others. I could tell someone that I loved them, but the words are used far too often these days to have as much meaning as they are meant to have. I could tell someone I missed their voice, or that I liked their laugh. I could tell them that I loved their smile, the twinkle in their eyes or the way they looked at me. So if I can do all of that, why is it I don't feel like telling someone I love them is ever enough? Even defining the word "love" with the help of doesn't seem to help with the struggle I have of trying to indicate how I feel when I 'love' someone, even with it's 28 definitions exquisitely spelled out in plain black and white print.

I can even go so far as to say I adore someone, but to say "I love you" just doesn't seem strong enough. It's more than four little letters. It's more than the love song written in cliche rhymes and sappy lyrics. It's more than a photo of a stolen kiss, a moment suspended in time. It's more than the parallels of two lives, always coming so close to touching and never reaching out.

Love is simply this:

I 'love' wanting to be around someone all the time, to be near them, to talk to them and to touch them. I 'love' with my whole heart, every fiber of my being, every basic instinct in my body. It's a raw emotion, animalistic and instinctive. It's the emotional need of knowing that the person you love is right there at a moment's notice, that they would drop everything to come to the rescue. Love can be shared between friends, family, soul mates and lovers. Love is so much more grand than just a boyfriend or a girlfriend. Love is a feeling of belonging, to read the words or to hear the words "my girl" and to have them shoot a shiver through your spine. Love is knowing that you 'belong' WITH someone or TO someone.

Love is all of that and more.

love [luhv]
1. a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person.
2. a feeling of warm personal attachment or deep affection, as for a parent, child, or friend.
3. sexual passion or desire.
4. a person toward whom love is felt; beloved person; sweetheart.
5. (used in direct address as a term of endearment, affection, or the like): Would you like to see a movie, Love?
6. a love affair; an intensely amorous incident; amour.
7. sexual intercourse; copulation.
8. ( initial capital letter ) a personification of sexual affection, as Eros or Cupid.
9. affectionate concern for the well-being of others: the love of one's neighbor.
10. strong predilection, enthusiasm, or liking for anything: her love of books.
11. the object or thing so liked: The theater was her great love.
12. the benevolent affection of god for His creatures, or the reverent affection due from them to God.
13. Chiefly Tennis . a score of zero; nothing.
14. a word formerly used in communications to represent the letter L.

–verb (used with object)
15. to have love or affection for: All her pupils love her.
16. to have a profoundly tender, passionate affection for (another person).
17. to have a strong liking for; take great pleasure in: to love music.
18. to need or require; benefit greatly from: Plants love sunlight.
19. to embrace and kiss (someone), as a lover.
20. to have sexual intercourse with.

–verb (used without object)
21. to have love or affection for another person; be in love.

—Verb phrase
22. love up, to hug and cuddle: She loves him up every chance she gets.

23. for love,
a. out of affection or liking; for pleasure.
b. without compensation; gratuitously: He took care of the poor for love.
24. for the love of, in consideration of; for the sake of: For the love of mercy, stop that noise.
25. in love, infused with or feeling deep affection or passion: a youth always in love.
26. in love with, feeling deep affection or passion for (a person, idea, occupation, etc.); enamored of: in love with the girl next door; in love with one's work.
27. make love,
a. to embrace and kiss as lovers.
b. to engage in sexual activity.
28. no love lost, dislike; animosity: There was no love lost between the two brothers.

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