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What is Love?

What is love? Many think love is that euphoric feeling you get when everything seems perfect between the two of you and you know you want to spend your lives together.

Some folks will tell you this feeling we call love is fleeting and will not last. They offer two solutions. One group says move on and fall in love again with someone new: split up, divorce, have an affair. The other says forget this euphoric type of love and seek mature love. Mature love, they say, means making deposits in an emotional bank account so that you can make later withdrawals.

I think both are wrong. This euphoria is not love. It is a symptom of love, an effect. And because it is, you can have it back at any time.

The formula is simple. One part outpouring of loving acts, enough to make you feel good about the sort of person you are, and one part total openness to receiving love without the limitations of your expectations. In other words, it requires tearing up the account book for that emotional bank account. You are owed nothing, absolutely nothing, but you pay wide-eyed attention to how much you receive anyway. You earn no credit for your deposits, but you make them anyway to feel good about the person you are and to see yourself reflected in your spouse's eyes. Just like when you fell in love with a stranger, only now it's with someone who shares your history, your family, your fortunes, your precious memories.

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Patty Newbold is a widow who got it right the second time...

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