What does it mean to love as you only live once and subsequently to live as you only love once? Well, the thoughts and approaches to answering this set of questions are endless, to say the least. However, I will try to take a slightly personal approach and share my thoughts.
Life is so precious for many reasons. Regardless of our belief system, we tend to place a high value on life itself and are often challenged to balance between living and existing. The YOLO (You Only Live / Love Once) anagram has become the battle cry of both baby-boomers and Millennials as we seek to make the most of our lives and experiences. However, when it comes to love, it seems like we’re somewhere between feeling our way in the dark or just waiting and hoping that the love of a lifetime falls into our lap. (Remember, first-hand experience is my main reference …) So the challenge is to break the cycle, but at the same time not feel like the “Charge of the Light Brigade” … Well, good luck with that! ! The harsh truth is that there are no guarantees in life. There is no secret formula that ensures success and the proverbial: happily ever after.
What we have is attitude and choice. We have the ability to choose not to be a victim of our condition and therefore to adapt an optimistic attitude of trust in the life we live and the decisions we make. I know, this sounds great when we read it or hear some “other person” tell us how it worked for them. Believe me I know. However, I think this is the time when we have to challenge ourselves to break the cycle, turn the corner, get out of the dark, or move forward. However you want to think about it, but we have to acknowledge our moments of truth … and be true to them!
In closing, I will offer my own process for your consideration. I consider myself a bit optimistic at heart, as well as a bit romantic in my ideas. Therefore, I will offer some of my favorite poems as mantras in this process. The first is my “attitude” mantra. This is embodied in the poem “Invictus”: “I am the Captain of my ship … the master of my Soul”. When it comes to my “choice / decision” mantra. I look at the “Serenity Prayer”: “Wisdom to know the Difference”. Lastly, I have a poem that really ties it all together for me. This is the poem “Si”: “to fill the relentless minute, with sixty seconds of distance traveled … Yours is the Earth and everything in it” … That is my approach to life and my attempt to … “Love as if you only live once” – “Live as if you only love once!”