“The best and most beautiful things in this world

cannot be seen or even heard,

but must be felt with the heart.”

— Helen Keller


I spent the morning tromping through a foot of snow filling bird feeders in the garden. I love the snow, but I really am more fond of shorts and flip flops and  this morning I’m bundled to my eyes looking like a space alien. It’s too cold to be working in the garden today, so I head to the local coffee shop to meet a friend.

I love my friends. I’m blessed to have friendships of all ages in all walks of life. They inspire me, they challenge me to be better than I am, and they sprinkle me with new experiences and perspectives. Today is no different.

My friend and I don’t get to see one another very often, but when we do it’s always special. With our business discussion done, we do what we love—we share deep philosophies of our worlds. Today he shared a story that makes me smile in agreement.

“You know, I told my children that our bodies are like a space suit. It houses the frame of who I am. They can cut open my brain but you can’t see my thoughts, they can cut open my heart but you can’t see my love or emotions. And when our spacesuits are no longer useful here on earth, who we are will be released from its boundaries.”

His words moved me. What better way to explain the essence of who we are and the unlimited potential in all of us. I wonder what our daily space suit lives would be like if we lived outside of their boundaries more often. We live too often with rules that stifle rather than protect us. And we love too often in a way that binds us from exploring an explosion of unconditional love.

Love, when we understand it as being more than an emotion, can set wings to our souls. It’s the part of us that will love a person when they’re unlovable, and stretches us to stay when we’d rather give up. This freed-up love is no longer given as an ‘if’ or ‘when’ kind of emotion, but learns to love in spite of others. True love gives even when it’s rejected or reciprocated.

I remember when I was pregnant with our son, wondering what it would be like to divide my love between him and his now 3-year-old sister. I fretted about it for months not telling anyone of my fear. His birth day arrived. And I thought my heart would explode. My love for our children had doubled rather than split. I knew in that moment, I would die for either one of them. So where had the extra love come from? I suppose it was from somewhere outside my space suit.

Reaching for the author of love fills us with far more love than we can give away—an endless love. This year on Valentine’s Day go ahead and give a card, chocolates, or flowers, but be mindful those things will pass away but the kind of love that inspires others to great things, isn’t always seen or heard