For the women, I hold dear to my heart.
Valentine’s Day, a day for lovers to profess their undying desire for one another. A day set aside for sweethearts, partners or a crush you are dying to hold in your arms.
A day of love.
If you know anything about me, you understand I believe in love. I have allowed my heart to lead me through my life thus far. Not always to an idyllic finish. Yet there is virtue in feeling love so deeply whether it crashes in the end. Each of us has felt the collapse of a broken heart, I’m no exception. However, I am grateful for the crushed dreams, and heart throbbing agony which has been placed on my chest after the blow of a broken heart. It proves I gave all of me to what I believe in, love.
For the ones who are professing their love to one another on Valentine’s Day, I will not shame or place any bitterness on your love. For it is your love in which the world turns. The lovers are who inspire tenderness, forgiveness, passion and kindness. My heart warms as I read your love notes on Social Media. A smile crosses my face when I view pictures of roses and fancy dinners. We all deserve love; your declaration of its raw beauty and passion is a testament to what love can do for our world.
But what if you are not loved? What if today you are one of many who feels alone, scared and broken-hearted?
What if you are a woman who is battling to be the strongest version of herself and Valentine’s Day tastes like a bitter insult?
What if you are fighting a battle so hard your fingernails bleed as you scratch and claw your way out from underneath the pain?
What if you are one of the women sitting in a corner hiding from your husband because his fists are clenched and ready to connect with your face?
What if you are alone and raising your children because the strongest thing you ever did in your life was to leave a horrible relationship?
What if you are the one left to fend for yourself, lie after lie?
What if you are the other woman and have been told over and over you will be the one, he promises?
What if you are the woman who lost her husband and is celebrating your first Valentine’s Day without him or the fifth and it has never stopped breaking your heart?
What if you are the woman recovering from rape and today feels like a stab in the back and all you want to do is scream?
What if today is crushing you from the inside and you can’t breathe?
I have something to tell you, you aren’t alone.
This is for the women, I hold closest to my heart. You are the ones who fight battles to survive every day. I write you this not only because I have fought many of these battles, but because I survived them, and so will you.
To the single mother who woke up early to find there was no food in her cupboard yet somehow scraped together lunch for her kids. You inspire me. The unconditional love of a mother is untouchable. There is no love like yours. Without women like you, we fail. Keep your head up and remember you are strong. You are loved by me.
To the browbeaten wife sitting in the corner, terrified of her husband. You don’t deserve his hands on you. Nothing warrants abuse, it is not love. Please see through the scathing words he twists into your heart, you are more than worthy. You are beautiful and strong. It is not your fault, it is never your fault. You are loved by me.
To the terrified girl feeling shame, guilt and panic after rape. I wrap you up with these words. Hold on to your heart, let the pain out any way you can. This is a battle you are able to fight, it may not feel like it now, but I promise you, you are more a warrior than you have ever believed. There is no time frame based on the grief, anxiety, hatred or pain you feel. Peace comes to you when you need it, not when you want it. You did nothing to deserve this, ever. I know you may feel hate today, but please do not forget to love yourself. You are loved by me.
To the woman who believes he will leave her for you. Move on. Not only are you breaking another woman’s heart, you are slowly turning yours into mortar. You have built walls around your heart covered in lies. Whether his or your own. Perhaps he told you his relationship was done, but if it was, he would be with you. Wouldn’t he? I know you didn’t mean to hurt anyone, but you did, you both did. Be good to yourself, you are worth more than second place. You are loved by me.
To the wife who lost the love of her life. You have given us inspiration, your love has forever spoken to our world. Your grief is the heartbeat we wholly aspire to feel in our chest. Today, please forgive yourself for the tears falling from your eyes, it is okay to miss him. You are so strong for fighting through every heartbreaking day. You are loved by me.
To the new mother who is drowning in uncertainty. Sweetie, you are unbelievable. You are a good mother. I don’t know one mom who hasn’t made a mistake. Your tired eyes will soon fade and before you know it those babies will be grown. Don’t waste time worrying if you are perfect because you already are. You are loved by me.
To every woman who has ever woke from a nightmare, as well as the ones who haven’t. You are my inspiration. Your strength moves mountains and touches my soul. If you aren’t feeling loved today, I hope you read this, and know, YOU ARE LOVED BY ME.
Happy Valentine’s Day to the strong women who fight battles behind closed doors, who have made life-altering mistakes as well as triumphs.
You are stronger than you believe.
You are more beautiful than you think.
You are loved by me.