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What Does Love Mean

What Does Love Mean

Originally published on 2-1-11

In 2007 I made the move from Austin to McAllen, and my life shifted.

I came back home and made a place for myself in my family’s business, Holiday Wine and Liquor, which my parents started in 1982.  Every day I am lucky enough to see my Mom, Dad, Grandma, both of my Brothers, two Aunts, an Uncle and a Cousin!  Holiday is very much a family business in the most encompassing definition of the word.

This past Fall, I felt a restlessness inside that was saying, it’s time to go. But, how could I leave my family? I have always had deep seated feelings about family and duty, and feel like I should work for the greater good rather than my own interests (maybe this is just self imposed).   I was guilt ridden. 

Well, one Monday morning (nudged by just having a perfect October weekend in Austin) I walked into my Dad’s office and without thinking (as that would give me further pause) jumped off the cliff and spit out the words, “I want to move back to Austin.”  As I felt the words leave my mouth, I felt both relieved and unsettled.  What would happen now?

Even though my folks have always been supportive, I was nervous about their reaction. I didn’t even have the courage to tell my Mom; in fact I avoided her office for days as I cowardly waited for my Dad to relay the news.  

Turns out, there was nothing for me to be anxious about.  My newest venture has been met with support and enthusiasm from my family.  Never once was I met with the silent treatment, or disappointment, or even a discouraging word.

In fact, early Christmas morning, as we were customarily sipping Mexican hot chocolate out of white ceramic mugs,  my Mom said to me, “People ask me how I feel about you moving, and I tell them, I was lucky to have you home for 3 extra years. You belong in Austin.”  I was floored.  That was the best gift she could have given me, permission.

That’s what love means.  “Love liberates. Love does not bind.  Ego holds.” –Maya Angelou.  Love says, I’d like to have you here to eat dinner with and chat, but since that’s not possible right now, go. It’s very powerful to be on the receiving end of palpable love, to see it and feel it in action. People who love you want the best for you.

Be mindful of the message you’re sending you're sending your loved ones.  Love them, support them, and lift them up into the next chapter of their life.  Allow them the space to become their most authentic selves.  Love means letting them stretch into who they were meant to be.  

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