Not Your Typical Valentine's Day Blog

by Jessie Gardner February 14, 2017

Happy Love Day!

I scrapped the email I had ready to go for today because I had an experience last night that I can't help but share with you. 

As the sun was setting and I wrapped up the day, I got a call from my mom. It was about Joe, my parent's dog. Joe is one of those amazing dogs that you feel has the power to read your mind and still love you. He is true to the name gentle giant and at 120 lbs., this mastiff-german shepherd mix had soul and was part of the family.  

Over the past few days, he'd been ill and in and out of the vet. The ultrasound, that was probably more high-tech than the one I had when I was pregnant, showed he had lymphoma, a common cancer in large dogs, with severely inflamed lymph nodes throughout his entire body. The vet said there was nothing else we could do and the only option we had was to put him down. 

Heartbreak, shock, and tears. A rushing river of emotion flooded through my entire body after hearing the news. It was so powerful. I felt like I could feel my heart sobbing with me, dripping mascara and all.

At first, I thought this rush of emotion was the feeling of loss. But, I now realize it was the feeling of love. It was pure love. It was the force that shows up when you are confronted with how much you love someone. I live my daily life assuming everyone will be here with me, always. I would go crazy if I thought the inverse. When I experienced the possibility of that bond being gone - poof - no more, here one day and gone the next, I felt how strongly I loved this furball in every cell of my body and had the desire we all get when we lose someone, to tell them that we love them.

I raced over to the vet and was fortunate to have time to tell Joe that I loved him and all the reasons why he was so spectacular.

I share this story not to break your heart on Valentine's Day, but to remind you of how powerful love is. This experience showed me that we keep love dormant in a cave, slumbering until the next big event when it's "appropriate" to tell people (and animals) that we love them. It seems like a trite statement to say life is short, but you never know how long you have or they have left to enjoy this lifetime and hear you say "I love you because...." 

So scrap your to-do list or at least bump it down a few notches and prioritize showing up, calling, letter-writing, or whatever form of communication you choose. Tell them everything. Tell them why you love them, why your life wouldn't be the same without them and that they make your heart sing (and maybe for fun, what song and why). You get the point.

A bell's not a bell 'til you ring it - A song's not a song 'til you sing it - Love in your heart wasn't put there to stay - Love isn't love 'til you give it away!”  - Oscar Hammerstein

Be love today and give it away. You never know if you'll have the same opportunity tomorrow to use that voice and share the gift that beats them all - the expression of love.

Now go tell those wonderful people and animals you love them like you never have before,

P.S. Here's Joe and I last night. I will miss him so much and love him forever.

P.S.S. I LOVED getting all the quotes you sent in and make a poster just for you. Free to download here.


Jessie Gardner
Jessie Gardner