“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket, safe, dark, motionless, airless, it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.”
― C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves
It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.
Theodore Roosevelt – The Man in the Arena
This quote at the top from CS Lewis is a great reminder of the virtue and vulnerability inherent in loving something outside yourself.
The man in the arena quote is a reminder that it is worth it.
Love requires risk.
We must risk rejection, heartache and betrayal in order to truly love another.
We must push through difficulties. Our faces will be marred with dust and sweat and blood.
It will be worth every excruciating moment, as they will be (most likely, no guarantees) repaid with purpose and meaning beyond which we cannot fathom on our own.
It will be the growth catalyst that propels us into becoming the best version of ourselves.
It will be the anvil upon which we will be sharpened and formed into something amazing.
Make it a great day.