What we talk about when we talk about love

The other day, a friend asked me if I had been to Sicily, the place where my parents were born and the root of my culture. I said “no, not yet” and it made me think of something…

First, a little background.

My husband is not from the state we live in. While I have my immediate family here and have had a life in Los Angeles for the past thirty years, my husband has not. His family and friends are on the east coast but his passion for music and the Pacific Ocean led him out west. (Thankfully!)

A little over a year into our relationship, we decided to step things up a notch. We moved in together. And we wanted me to meet his parents. At that time, roundtrip flights to Orlando were going to cost us nearly a thousand dollars. Having just moved in together and needing to pay for a few surprise expenses like car work and dental bills, we did not have an extra thousand to spend.

A little more background.

I am Sicilian, as most my readers know, and going to Sicily has been on my goal list for as long as I can remember. I have a ton of family there and when I was single, I was planning to go visit there for a month. I had been saving up my frequent flier miles for a round trip ticket for almost a decade.

Then, I met my husband and though I was able to take the trip for the first time in my life, I had postponed it because I wanted to get to know him and felt like something magical was happening.

It was indeed and flash forward back to where we were… moved in and wanting to go to Florida so I could meet his parents but lacking in the funds department.

I went online and looked up how many miles I would need for two round trip tickets to Orlando. It was the exact amount for my Sicilian trip.

Though this even surprised myself, I immediately offered them to be used to fly to Florida. My husband insisted I not give up my trip but I was steadfast on the idea and ultimately, he accepted the gift.

We went to Florida and had the most wonderful of trips. His parents were an absolute pleasure and welcomed me in with open arms, thrilled to see their son and I in love.

I had zero regrets on using those miles. And that’s when I realized I was deeply in love with him and my priorities had shifted. Though Sicily is extremely high on my list, he’s higher.

Six months later, my husband’s father fell ill and passed away.

And that was when I realized those miles were never meant for Sicily.

Spirituality

I went camping in Yosemite for three nights, four days and had a spiritual experience.

When I’m asked what religion I am, I say I’m agnostic. I don’t know if a God exists one way or another as I don’t have tangible proof of either. And I don’t presume to know what others should or should not believe in, but I do find that my religion is found in nature.

Spirituality is the state of being spiritual, and being spiritual mostly relates to religious matters of the spirit. (At least for purposes of this blog, these are the definitions I’ll be using…)

I’ve struggled all my life with how organized religions often preached love yet they’re in fact some of the most intolerant and evil-minded organizations out there, and they often believe that others must believe as they do.

I couldn’t imagine this was religion. So I shunned it. For many years. But as I got older, I began to truly question it and my search through theology and philosophy and experience led me to finding a religion that made sense to me. That I could see in front of me. That I could experience the truth of.

Nature.

Natural forces don’t care about your feelings and sorry to say, but they don’t care about your religious beliefs either. They are Cause and Effect. They are life.

Answers can be found in nature. Causality. The Food Chain. Life. Death. Family.

“The world is emblematic. Parts of speech are metaphors, because the whole of nature is a metaphor of the human mind.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson