Tag Archives: hearts

Why You Shouldn’t Be Dreading Valentine’s Day

On a college campus, attitudes towards Valentine’s Day can range from gleeful to bitter and everything in between. The annual holiday, affectionately dubbed “Singles Awareness Day” by some, tends to harshly divide college students into two groups of people: those who have a significant other and those who do not. But romantic love isn’t the only type of love that exists; if you are spending the day without a significant other, that does not mean you are unloved in the world.

valentines candy
“Romantic love isn’t the only type of love that exists.” Photo from: www.theinvictusgroupinc.files.wordpress.com

Unfortunately for us native English speakers, we only have one word for love which leads to its cheapening and overuse. The Ancient Greeks had many different words to describe the various types of love that can exist.  One of these types that the Greeks valued most is philia, or the love that stems from a deep friendship. In the understanding of the Ancient Greeks, this word referred to the love shared between brothers in arms on the battlefield. While the majority of us have not experienced literal warfare, we still understand the importance of someone who is there for you when you need them the most.

By that definition, your best friend or friends can be your valentine. Your pet can be your valentine. Your favorite family member can be your valentine.  You can be your own valentine. All of the above can be your valentines! And while romantic love can be an incredible experience, it is not the end-all achievement for the various types of love that life has to offer.

Regardless of how you spend it, I hope that you have a very Happy Valentine’s Day this Tuesday, and you know that you are loved.

“There are all kinds of love in this world but never the same love twice.”

― F. Scott Fitzgerald

The broken heart syndrome phenomenon

According to Time magazine, an immense amount of research has shown that a death or the loss of a person close to you can not only break your heart metaphorically, but it can also cause physical damage that can lead to serious heart problems.

A new study published by Dr. Simon Graff finds that people who experience a partner dying are a much higher risk for atrial fibrillation, or irregular heartbeat, and the effects are life-long.

Having a broken heart is more than just a metaphor. Graphic from Pinterest
Having a broken heart is more than just a metaphor. Graphic from Pinterest

For many years, researchers have studied the phenomena of the broken heart syndrome, or stress cardiomyopathy. This occurs when a highly stressful event, such as the death of a spouse, results in a person feeling like they’re having a heart attack. The symptoms include the same ones that occur when having a heart attack: shortness of breath and chest pain.

When an emotional event happens, researches suspect a surge of stress hormones are released which cause this feeling of having a heart attack.

Researchers looked at citizens in Denmark who were diagnosed with atrial fibrillation. Out of the 88, 600 people, 41 percent of them who lost a partner were more likely to develop atrial fibrillation within the first month of their partner’s death compared to those who hadn’t lost anyone. The researchers also discovered that the risk is higher in younger people, especially when a partner as died suddenly or unexpectedly.

A cardiologist at New York University Langone Medical Center, Harmony Reynolds, states that “We can’t stop stressful situations from coming up in our lives but there may be ways to change the way stress affects our bodies.” She says regular exercise, things like yoga, meditation, and even deep breathing can increase the parasympathetic nervous system which increase our body’s ability to handle stress. However, these activities won’t be able to reduce the risk completely.

This study, as large and somewhat thorough as it is, can’t completely confirm that the feelings of grief or loss are directly related to atrial fibrillation. “Right now our work can only point to an association, but we hope to help make a shift in society’s mindset—that a time of grief is not only a mental state but maybe also physical,” says Graff, the author of the study.

Misconceptions about love

Love can mean so many things to so many people. It has a different definition for every situation. It can mean “I care about you, deeply” or “You are my one and only” or even “You are my best friend and I don’t know what I’d do without you.”

However, many people think love is the almighty power, that it can heal a broken heart and cure all pain in the world. This is a misconception. Love isn’t suppose to complete you or fill the void of self-loathing. It isn’t suppose to tell you your worth or how you value yourself.

Love is suppose to be something extra to enhance your life, not be the sole reason for your happiness. It allows you to share your life with another person, to tell them about the success you are having or even the hardship you are dealing with. Love should be the icing on the cake, not the ingredients.

One of the most common things I hear among my friends is “why can’t someone just love me? Everything would be so much better if I had someone to love me.”

First of all, one person cannot be the solution to all of life’s problems. Why would the love of somebody else make everything in life better? I feel as though if you need to love and affection of someone else to make you happy, then you are lacking in self-love and need to take a step back and find the strength in you to love yourself.

No one should feel like they need to depend on someone else to feel love because who knows how long that person will be in your life and when they’re gone, what will you be left with?

"[Y]ou don’t need to find your other half because you aren’t a half to begin with." Image from someecards.com
“[Y]ou don’t need to find your other half because you aren’t a half to begin with.” Image from someecards.com
Another phrase I hear frequently from my friends is “I want to find my other half, someone to complete me.” What I have to say to this is, you don’t need to find your other half because you aren’t a half to begin with. You are a whole person who can depend on yourself and love yourself. You are a complete person. You are not broken. There is nothing wrong with wanting another person to share your life with, to come home to and love with all that you are. But making another person your sole person in life and the only reason you can find your self-worth isn’t healthy.

Self-love should come first before you find another person to share your love with. There needs to be enough to go around.

Love can be life-changing, miraculous, and beautiful all at the same time. It can make you a better person, a happier person, but love should come from everywhere, not from one single person. Remember who you are and what you stand for before allowing yourself to share that with someone else.

Update on Camren

My shipper heart is dead. Not just dead, crushed and ripped to pieces. Trampled all over and then thrown into a burning hot fire never to be seen again. My OTP, my forever kind of love, my heart’s one true desire has finally crashed and burned and the worst part about it is I can’t do anything about it.

The two girls from Fifth Harmony, Camila Cabello and Lauren Jauregui, have finally called it quits on their fictional relationship. Well, it was as real as the grass is green for me but it’s much too soon for my broken heart to talk about it. These girls have been shipped together since the very beginning of their career, their auditions for X Factor three years ago and the love and shipping has only become more intense since.

Camila and Lauren have been best friends for three years, “instantly clicking the moment they saw each other” said Camila in a birthday post to Lauren.

At first the shipping was innocent. Lauren herself coined the ship name “Camren” to her twitter followers a few years ago. However, when their fans started to become very, let’s say, creative with the ship by creating fanfiction, fan art, Camren videos, etc., the girls started to become distant and awkward around each other. I think this was because the girls began to see those pictures and those videos and wondered themselves if there was something stronger than friendship between them. They were confused by the way that they looked at each other, unconsciously sneaking glances and attempting to discreetly touch each other when they thought nobody was looking. They weren’t ready to see what the fans were seeing so they distanced themselves from each other to prevent rumors.

I think management also had a part in their sudden end to their friendship in public eye. They have said before that “they aren’t allowed to talk about Camren” said Camila in an interview. That makes us Camren shippers curious about what else the management doesn’t want them doing or saying because of whatever reasons they have up their sleeves. The bottom line is, Lauren and Camila were fine with the ship, that is, until the truth started to surface itself with proof of lovestruck eyes and subtle hand holding behind their backs, until management saw it too and put it stop to as fast as they could.

Can you feel the love tonight? Do they look like just friends to you? Photo from tumblr
Can you feel the love tonight? Do they look like just friends to you? Photo from tumblr

Recently, Fifth Harmony have been touring in Europe. This tour brought Camren back to life like you wouldn’t believe. Camila and Lauren are the only girls in the group that can speak Spanish, other reason they are so close.

The girls had been interacting immensely and were giggling, laughing, and touching just like they use to. There was a video on one of the other members of Fifth Harmony snapchat’s that had Lauren speaking in the background, saying “I’m sitting next to Camila” in a loving tone. Something, which I’m sure just like every other Camren interaction, wasn’t meant to be recorded, but it was.

They were getting along great and becoming the girls they use to be. However, this honeymoon phase ended as quickly as it began. Lauren and Camila began to see the comments from the fans again, stating that Camren is alive and other Camren related topics that quickly ended their cute encounters and any chance of them sitting next to each other.

The final twist of the knife came yesterday when a snippet of their newest interview came out. Camila states that she gets upset when people that they are “linked to” romantically get hate from the fans because they say “Ugh, so gross. She belongs to Lauren.”

Yep. She said it. She actually brought up Camren and killed it brutally with the sharpest knife she could find. However, I still have some theories about this event. Camila is releasing a song with her rumored lover Shawn Mendes in three days. It’s a little convenient that three days before a new song is released she brings up Camren, which she never does. She has to promote this new song with her “boyfriend” and what better way to do that than to smash all rumors of another relationship, especially one that is within her own girl band.

Another point to make is the interview, in its entirety, hasn’t been released yet and there is still more to the story than what they gave way so my delusional shipper heart still has hope for what the girls are going to do and say next.

I don’t know about you but everything revolving around Camren has always been a bit suspicious and mysterious. Why would the girls feel they need to hide their affection if it was strictly platonic? Why would they address Camren and not the other ships within in the group?

There are so many questions that I, as Camren shipper, and all the other Camren shippers have, but I don’t think we’ll ever receive the answers to them and we’ll just have to deal with it. We will continue to ship these girls for what they show us and for what we see in their eyes when they look at each other. Nothing can change that.

Peace is not for sale

Selling the idea of peace is like selling boxes of air. It will not get us anywhere closer to the idea than we already are, but it will get money out of our pockets.

I recently noticed that retailers are targeting teens and young adults with peace signs on their clothing and jewelry. I am as into the whole world peace thing as much as the next person, but I don’t see a point in using the peace sign as an adornment. At the very least, the peace sign should not be sold in the volume in which it is being advertised.

By seeing the peace sign on things as ordinary as a pair of underwear, shirts or earrings, our generation is stripping the sign of any real meaning. Sure, it might still mean the same thing, but we will begin to see it as more of a decoration than an important symbol.

As for why it is being sold in bulk, in the same way that sex sold items in the past, retailers are very much aware that peace sells. By making the peace sign a fad, it guarantees that more people will want to buy apparel that is covered in it. In this day and age, just like any other, it is difficult to avoid getting sucked into dressing just like everyone else. When you see a symbol on a large number of outfits, it soon becomes the norm, just like our generation’s dress code of denim jeans and a hoodie.

We are definitely weak to the power of suggestion when it comes to fashion.

Here is what I would like to know: when you put on your peace sign earrings, slip into your denim bell bottoms and accent your outfit with a scarf covered in peace signs, are you dressing that way because you believe people should live and let live, or are you allowing the big clothing and accessory brands to pick your pocket so you can look exactly like everyone else?

If you do not have a peaceful attitude or value the idea of peace then why are you walking around with the symbol plastered all over your clothing?

The same thing can be said for love. You can walk into just about any junior section and see things covered in hearts. I don’t suppose people wear things like that because they particularly love others; more than likely they just think it’s cute.

What I’m really trying to say is that we have beaten things like peace and love to death with our pointless ideas of what is fashionable. No one is capable of looking genuine by wearing a peace sign if they are not a peaceful person. I would really like to see our generation either adopt the ways of our fashion or start dressing more originally. If neither one of these things happen then what is the point of it all? Do not kill a perfectly good idea by forgetting what it means.