Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage ~ Lao Tzu
My mom always told me that I wore my heart on my sleeve. She was worried about how much I lost it, or gave it away, or how easy it was to be stolen. Afterall it was right there, in plain sight. This never changed, despite the many who dropped it, I would pick it up, dust it off, attend to the bruises, bumps, cracks and broken pieces (duct tape always works) and affix it firmly back from where it came. On my sleeve.
Wearing my heart on my sleeve has been looked at by many as dangerous, risky and making me more open to getting hurt or being taken advantage of. That I am in someway more naive. I assure you that that is only partially accurate. It is true that the phrase itself is a casual way of saying that I expose my emotions more often, say what I’m thinking, put it “all out there” and I am an open book. I don’t know how to be any other way. I give of myself, and yes, there are times when I have given too much, but at least I try. I continue to put myself out there and give it a go. Yes, I have fallen down, yes I have been hurt, yes I have shed tears, but I have never become bitter or jaded or angry, because I still believe in love. I still believe in the good in people, in connection, in kindness, in vulnerability and being truly myself, in all of my perfect imperfection.
The alternative does not excite me. Although a guarded, hidden or slow moving heart does offer some protection from hurt, disappointment and rejection, it also shields from truly loving and accepting love. To me, that hurts more than a failed attempt. Living behind walls and not being truly open can prevent rejection, but it also prevents acceptance. It impedes connection and intimacy and a true acceptance of who we really are. I admit that I have made some less than optimal decisions, and trusted in some less than optimal relationships. These experiences, although could be viewed as failures and reasons to hide, have allowed me to love harder.
I wear my heart on my sleeve because I don’t know any other way to be. I say too much, I show too many emotions, I share my insecurities, my sensitivities and I speak my mind. I love with all I have to give. I don’t need to be tough, I don’t want to be indifferent, I have no need for resentment or expectations or conditions. I can only be me, heart on my sleeve and all
The most powerful weapon on earth is the human soul on fire ~ Ferdinand Foch