The Greatest Gift

“The greatest thing you’ll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return”


I walked through my front door last night to delicious aromas. Chicken picatta, brown rice and spinach were warm, ready, and waiting for me. My husband had prepared it for me.

I felt loved.

After working on my book proposal I walked into the family room where my husband was watching the Giants game. I let him know American Idol was on, and that I’d like to see it. He was open to switching the channel and watching it with me. He is a big Giants fan.

I was aware he was showing me love once again.

When American Idol came on we saw Casey sing Nature Boy, made famous by Nat King Cole.

Casey is not a stereotypical American Idol. His music is probably better appreciated by people in my age category, the baby boomers.

His look is average; he would not be typecast as an American Idol. His style of singing is uniquely his own. Sometimes I like it, sometimes I don’t. He is authentically himself. I do like that in anyone.

I wasn’t sure of the song in the beginning, but by the end, I was in love! The lyrics ring of truth with a capitol T.

“The greatest thing you’ll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return.”

Experiencing love last night from my husband is greater than how much money I make, what kind of car I drive, what level of education I have achieved, how much I weigh, or what I look like.

The greatest message I can pass along is to learn to love yourself and others with respect and appreciation. Focus on giving and receiving. When you look back on your life, this ability to love and be loved is the greatest gift.

Michelle Minero is a licensed marriage family therapist who specializes in eating disorder recovery. She created an intensive outpatient eating disorder program in 2000, brought ANAD (Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders, Inc.) to Petaluma shortly after and founded EDRS (Eating Disorder Recovery Support, Inc.), a Marin and Sonoma County based 501(c)3 non-profit organization in 2005. In 2011, Michelle co-founded the Love Warrior Community with her daughter, Emelina, an online community that helps people cultivate self-love, self-acceptance and body acceptance through creative expression. Michelle is finishing her book, Self-Love: The Only Diet That Works, and her dream is to see a world filled with people who love themselves and their bodies. Connect with Michelle on Facebook and Twitter and help spread the Self-Love Movement!

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