GLADWIN COUNTY – Love has long been the subject of poetry, prose, and song. Epic novels have been written on the subject, wars have been waged in it’s honor, and the fabled stories of star-crossed lovers have endured through the centuries. Romantic love is something that we as a society are obsessed with. Each year on Feb. 14 couples everywhere celebrate romantic love on Valentine’s Day. Romantic love is a beautiful and wonderful thing, but it is far from the only type of love we experience in our lives.
Platonic love is a type of non-romantic love that is shared between friends. This type of love is often the most overlooked. It is not the burning love of song, rather it is the quiet love of trust, championship, and mutual respect. Those we share platonic love with are those that we travel through life with, the ones that have often known us through various stages of ourselves. The support that is shared is vital to our happiness and security.
Another vital type of love is familial love — the love we have for our families. For most the love of a family is the first type of love that people experience. From the start of life this love is there to make us feel secure, warm, and cared for. This love helps us grow and teaches us about life and how to love in different capacities. Familial love often becomes forgotten as time slips by. This does not necessarily mean that the love is gone, but rather that life can often out shadow a love that has always been there.
Romantic love is the most expressed and remembered love of all. This is not the result of this love being more important, but rather being more celebrated by society. Not much can be written about romantic love that has not already been expressed by great artists. Romantic love can be the best thing in the world when we have it, and the worst thing in the world when it is gone. It can be all encompassing, both thrilling and terrifying those on it’s precipice. It should be entered into whole heartedly, eschewing all fears and doubt. This kind of love is both challenging and rewarding.
There are many different kinds of love beyond these basic three. This Valentine’s Day remember to celebrate all the love you are fortunate enough to have in your life. Make it a goal to use the holiday to spread more love around the world, and use it as a jumping off point to carry the appreciation of love throughout your year. Love gives us so much in life, it is as Irish poet Oscar Wilde said, “Who, being loved, is poor?”