You may have been through a gauntlet of grief with your spouse or partner. Then along comes Valentine’s Day and it’s another hurdle. It’s hard to pick yourself up.

Reframing this memory of being loved won’t be easy. It takes bravery and fortitude to find gratitude. The loss of that perfect someone you loved and still love may linger.

You may or may not find someone again, but you can get past the pain and fearlessly look for love. Even if it is not the romantic kind, love is everywhere.

if you are brave enough to you transform your agony into action, you may find love comes in many forms. All of them are restorative.

The real Saint Valentine went against a church edict and married young people when the church made it unlawful. There was a war going on and the belief was that married soldiers wouldn’t be as self-sacrificing as unmarried ones. When St. Valentine got caught, he got punished. However, most of us are not called to be martyrs. It is not the kind of bravery many of us are called to perform.

Bravery is highly overrated when you are in the process losing someone. You need help. It’s okay to be weak for a while.

Surviving a loved one’s passing, particularly the love of our lives that requires a unique kind of unwelcomed courage. The word courage comes from “Coeur” which is the French word for heart. It means doing something valiant even when you’re afraid. How better to define the grief?  You have no choice but to accept it. Fear has no say in the matter. But you do.

Loss can literally break your heart with a chemical response that diminishes oxytocin (the trust hormone), dopamine, serotonin and other things you need for a happy life.

Loss depletes bravery and a sense of value.

George Henry Lewes said, “The only cure for grief is action.”

Are you brave enough to let yourself be loved again? It is enough to want to be brave, you don’t have to do anything but believe it’s okay to want someone to love.

You begin within. You deserve to be loved!

Whoever your sweetheart was probably asked you many times what you wanted to do for Valentine’s Day. You probably asked the same in return.

It was in the reciprocity in which you both felt loved and connected.

If you were a gracious couple, this was the day you did whatever the other person and they did the same. You asked them where they wanted to go for dinner and you went. You asked them what they wanted to do and you did it. If you did nothing and did it together, that is still something!
Endless cards on huge rack were searched to find just the right sentiment. They may have been custom made or handwritten. They may have come with jewelry, chocolate or a tie. You know, the one she wanted you to wear for that special dinner out.

This invitation to go out is not so different. You may have lost the person but you have not lost their personality. You can access them through the memory of your romantic familiarity.

What would they ask you to do? Would they ask you to please find someone else to love? Then somehow find the courage to begin that process in any way you see possible.

Would they say, I don’t want you to love anyone but me? Maybe you can’t love anyone but that person. Deal with their insecurity and your agony. Get help if you need it.

We are all built to be in relationships, not in loneliness. The first book of the Bible says, “It is not good for man to be alone.” Genesis Chapter 2:18. God said that. Science agrees. We do not fare as well physically when we are not connected emotionally. It can actually take years off your life to be alone.

Solitary confinement is a punishment. It is time to have the heart to seek relief.

I wrote a song once with Bobby E. Boyd. It was titled. “You Will Be Loved Again.” (Mary Joye, Bobby. E. Boyd, Warner Tamerlane).  The second verse said”

Go ahead and let the rain come down,

It’s the only way the clouds will ever clear.

But pain is deceiving, so keep on believing

And you’ll find a love that knows so fear.

Somewhere, out there, is a place to begin

You will be loved again.

Turn your loss of a valentine into valuing yourself. Don’t let that red and white rack of cards break your heart anymore. Go buy one for someone even if for a family member or someone you know is lonely. Buy one for someone new you have feelings for if it’s time for that. Allow yourself to connect with old friends or dare to be brave and connect with someone else.

Ask yourself, what do I want? Begin by being your own valentine. Your valuable relationship with yourself will direct you to connect with children, friends, family and even maybe, someday a new love.


Mary Joye

For the past ten years I have been a private practice Licensed Mental Health Counselor. I'm a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional and a Florida Supreme Court Family Mediator. Grief resilience and trauma resolution is a large part of my practice. I was raised on the beach in Florida. My father was a psychiatrist and I worked in his office in my youth. He wanted me to follow in his footsteps. Instead, I chose to become a theatrical design major instead and graduated from the University of Florida in 1979. My first job out of college, KISS employed me as a make-up and wardrobe assistant for three years. It was quite an experience and a good background to study communications. Later in Nashville, I began songwriting, acting and performing professionally and am a member of BMI, ASCAP and a former member of the Country Music Association, Screen Actors Guild and The American Federation of Musicians. That career grew into a 20-year music ministry. I also wrote ad copy for XM radio, Texaco, The Filmhouse and currently write for two publications in Winter Haven, Florida, where I returned to take care of my ill and now deceased parents. I earned an MA in Counseling from Trevecca Nazarene University in 2000. (Photo by Daniel DeCastro)

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