Love doesn't make the world go 'round; love is what makes the ride worthwhile. ~Franklin P. Jones
By Nichole Giles
Since today is Sunday, and my crazy week has finally wound to a close, I thought I’d take some time to reflect on a few of the things I’ve mentioned in my recent blog entries. For several days I’ve wanted to write something meaningful, thoughtful, and true. Things I love and that really matter to me.
On Sunday, I mentioned loving sunshine. Sunshine to me is as important as breathing air or drinking water when walking in a desert. I love the feeling of the warmth on my skin, the light through my eyelids, and the natural vitamin B pumping into my blood. There is no substitution, no better feeling than being outside on a sunny day.
I also talked about how much I love snuggles from my kids. I don’t know about you other parents, but there is no better salve for a bruise, no better solution to stitch a broken heart, and no more satisfying solution to the things that go wrong in life—and in the world—than a snuggle from one of my sweet, loving children. For the past several years, it has become a nightly tradition that my youngest son and I snuggle up on my bed together for at least twenty minutes. Neither of us sleeps well if we forget or are unable to have our nightly snuggle. And snuggles aren’t just good for healing what ails you. It’s also a great way to celebrate things that go right and wonderful in life and the world as well. It’s one of the best parts of life. My kids are growing—in fact, my oldest is bigger than me by about half a foot—but the fact that they’re too big for me to pick up and hold in my arms, doesn’t mean I need their snuggles any less. On the contrary. I need them more every single day.
I love the ability to help others because by helping them, I remember to be grateful that I can. There have been times in the past when I’ve needed help, and whatever was needed has been available from the willing service of others. I cannot tell you how wonderful it feels to be able to return the favor, to give of my time and abilities to assist someone else. I am a better person when others allow me to serve them.
My loving wonderful friends are a great source of love for me. I am so, so blessed with a number of wonderful, loving friends all of whom hold a special place in my heart. There are a handful of women I spend a lot of time with, for whom I would do anything, and I trust with my whole heart that they would do anything for me. Friends like that are a rare and special gift from God. Besides them, I have so many writing friends who go out of their way to help me improve and learn, and with whom I share a common bond. I don’t know where I’d be without them. And other friends, in so many capacities, with so many different purposes in my life. I love you all, and thank you.
Freedom and the ability to choose what I believe, is something else for which I’m amazingly grateful, and something I love every day. This one word affects what I wear, how and where I live, and all the other choices those in other circumstances aren’t allowed to make. I get to choose my own life and my destiny. Whatever problems we have in our country, I’m absolutely grateful to live here. I’m proud to be an American.
And then there is my wonderful, loving, sweet, kind, amazing husband who loves me, despite my faults, mood swings, and mistakes. He loves me and never questions the amount of time I spend writing, the lack of time I spend cleaning house or cooking, and my need to spend time with the friends mentioned in the above paragraph. He worries about my needs, my feelings, and my desires, and encourages me to learn how to fly—even though he knows I’ll first have to figure out how to build my own wings. He is the center of my universe, and I am his. I love him with my whole soul.
Yesterday, I was reminded that I love technology. Because frankly, my writing process would take five times as long without it. Also, my laptop alone has spared the lives of possibly hundreds of trees. Did I mention that my husband—er, uh, I mean Santa—gave me my laptop for Christmas to encourage my writing? Yeah, that’s another reason I love it. (and him.) Now, if only it would lose a little weight for those days when I haul it all over town, I’d love it even more. Cell phones, DVD players, gizmos and gadgets and programs…they all have a place in making my life easier. I love those things.
Today, I love my friend Christine, for spearheading this challenge and by doing so making me take the time to think about all the things I truly love in life.
I love all the writing instructors I’ve had through the years, Carol Lynch Williams, Cheri Pray Earl (who taught the class I took only yesterday,) Dave Wolverton, Martine Leavitt, Claudia Mills, B.J. Rowley, and more members of the LDS Storymakers association than I could possibly name in one blog. Thank you all for your brilliant tutelage. Without you, I would have given up writing a long time ago.
Finally, I love my readers. Because of you, I am motivated to keep writing. Even though I’d write anyway, it’s sure a lot more fun to know someone will actually read my thoughts.