When I was in college, I majored in philosophy and learned how to ponder. It seemed to me that the process of pondering was as important as what one pondered. Three decades later, I still ponder over things that others may never even consider. For example, while brushing my teeth this morning, I pondered over my tooth-brush. It is one of those with the blue bristles that fade over time. When the blue fades halfway up the bristle, it is time to replace the toothbrush. This amazing technological breakthrough eliminates having to mark down on your calendar when to replace your toothbrush. Anything to make life easier.
The vanishing blue bristles eliminate a lot of worry for me; I wouldn't want to be brushing on a brush that is four weeks past its prime. However, the time that I save not worrying about when to replace my brush, I spend it pondering about where does the blue goes? The same is true when it comes to those non stick pans for cooking or baking. Where does the non stick coating go when it wears off the pan? Does the blue from the bristles and the non stick coating attach themselves to my stomach or perhaps my digestive track?
As I look out my window today, the beautiful white snow is slowly melting. Spring is just around the corner. Time for me to ponder again. Where does the white go when the snow melts? Those, who studied more practical things while in school like science, will quickly explain that the white is the result of light reflected off frozen water molecules. The snow isn't really white; it only appears white. When the snow melts, the crystals change form and become liquid. I knew that, but where does the white go when snow melts?
My pondering may seem useless to some. However, it is quite practical. For example, have you ever been in love and lost that person due to death, divorce, or disinfatuation? The love that you shared with that person, where did that love go? Did it evaporate or disappear? Was our investment in that other person wasted? Where does love go when love disappears?
When we lose a love, our love for them continues but in a different form-just like when snow turns into water. Nature always conserves; it doesn't waste anything that is beautiful or good like snow or water. So it is with our love for another. Our love can take on a new form if we are willing to face loss. Often we are so hurt that we swear off ever loving again. Or if we do love again, we do it with our guard up in an attempt to protect ourselves.
Love remains within us waiting only to be expressed again to another. Nothing is ever wasted when it comes to love just like in nature. Our love will change its form or appearance; it will be expressed and received differently. However, our investment in love remains even when we find a new person to love. The only time when we lose our investment is when we don't share it with another fearing hurt, rejection or loss. When we attempt to play it safe, we run the risk of destroying the love that we have accumulated over the years with parents, friends or spouses.
Love is a constant in nature. It will remain within us as long as we are willing to share it freely with another. Your Valentine may come or go over the years, but your love will always be there within you waiting for the right time and place to be transformed again into something of supreme beauty. This year's roses are fading fast, the cards have been discarded to the mess on the desk and the candy is all gone, but love alone will remain. All that we must do is to share it with another.
This article first appeared in the Dixon Telegraph.