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Published author and book nerd, I write and review romance novels.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Love, actually

We begin by loving the sound of our mother’s voice while we are in her womb. Next, we grow to love her face, and that of our father. Siblings, childhood friends, extended family - they all get a slice of our love as we grow up. A love that comes and goes, replaced by new feelings driven by new interests.
 
We do have, however, a lifelong romance: the love of oneself. For many, that is, indisputably, the strongest emotional element they will ever experience. A fewer (yet significant) number of people will, at some point in time, feel the magic of loving their life partner. When that happens, everything they know about romance from books, family or other people’s experiences becomes pale compared to what they feel right then and there. Words become caresses; kisses stop speech when words become superfluous; cuddles are heart-stoppers; love-making is the ultimate fusion. Then comes the real trial, that of facing life together. That goes far beyond physical closeness; it entails commitment, harmony and companionship, understanding and acceptance. More often than not, love doesn’t withstand these tests. It succeeds at some, but it’s sufficient to fail at just one, and it will crumble. Many try to piece it back together, but few understand that if one or more elements are missing, there was no love in the first place. A compulsive desire to own a personal fairy tale doesn’t represent the foundation for love.
True love is an exclusive bond of trust and fidelity. It gives the ability to be lover and best friend equally. It holds the connotation of being a soul mate bond. But most importantly, it withstands the challenge of time.
For those who experience joy and happiness, time is too short, as it is too long for those who grieve and suffer. For those who wait, it is too slow, as it is too swift for those who fear. But for those who truly love, time is blessed eternity.
I look forward to spending my eternity at your side, my love.
 
Lillian Summers
Author of contemporary romance novel 'Follow the white pebbles' and paranormal romance novel 'Mindbender'
 

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

The pursuit of happiness

It is often said that happiness makes up in height for what it lacks in length. Most of us live with the perception that happiness is a temporary state, here today, elusive again tomorrow. I often wondered if, by sticking to this belief, we are actually shaping our future into one of doubt and denial.

Happiness does have a beginning, but its end is entirely dependent on our willingness, or the lack thereof, to preserve it. It is, indeed, a state that we can manipulate ourselves, for it is not conditioned upon our circumstances, but it is the result of good conscience, good health, occupation and the freedom that we grant ourselves. The latter is a state that is highly contingent upon our willingness to fight. More often than not, we choose to be imprisoned in a cage of dependency, compromise and limitations. We unhappily nurture dysfunctional relationships, we hold onto unsatisfying jobs and questionable habits. We constantly dwell on the past and are driven by the anxious dependence upon the future.
But if we open our eyes, we will see that everything, even darkness and silence, has its wonders. We do have the power to extract happiness from common things.  Happiness is an inside job. Its secret is no more a secret than our willingness to choose life.
To me, happiness doesn’t translate into riches or possessions. It lies in the knowledge and satisfaction that all the bitterness and trauma of my past were a necessary devil that shaped me into what I am today; that I am a formidably strong woman, because I managed to survive.
It lies in waking up every morning next to my husband, to look into his eyes and see unmeasurable love, to return it to him just as much. To check my email and find a love letter from him. To read in it that to him, I am the most beautiful woman on earth. To revel in the simple miracle that I have a lifetime ahead of me with him by my side. To be able to tell him ‘I love you’ at any given time and place.
During the past 45 years I went to hell and back many times. It took me that long to learn that happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. It is the experience of living every minute with love, grace and gratitude.
Lillian Summers
Author of contemporary romance novel 'Follow the white pebbles' and paranormal romance 'Mindbender'