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By Karen Alaire

As a child the meaning of love in relationship was a search for people who could provide me with a sense of safety and security. Many years later I believe there is more to it. I am interested in my spiritual nature. From that perspective I look for the meaning of love in the qualities of respect, appreciation and acceptance of myself and others.

I feel that energy is circulating through my nature through seven basic areas in my body called chakras. Each chakra has three levels of consciousness that run through me like computer programs. They correspond to my unconscious, conscious and superconscious. I call them my physical being, my thinker and my higher self.

I am applying this perspective in all my relationships. One example is with my parents who are 80 and 81 years old. This fall they sold the home my father built 44 years ago. They moved into a new house 30 miles south of their old home and right around the corner from my oldest brother. The new house is smaller and except for the basement is all on one floor with very few steps. This is important for my physically frail mother. It has a small yard and a place for a wood working shop. My father needs these amenities to give his life meaning and purpose.

I noticed when I listened to my father I felt uncomfortable with his decision making process. I believe under the stress of this change, his old patterns of behavior or programs in his subconscious and consciousness were guiding his way. Taking a step back and remembering the era my father grew up in helps me accept why he did things in a particular way. I could see that his first three chakras were running the show as he negotiated the sale of the home he built and the purchase of the new house. I watched how he treated my mother and I didn’t like it. As I explore how to upgrade my programs within my consciousness, this perspective gives me new tools to use to relate to him. Giving myself permission to disagree with his approach, while respecting it as his choice is one tool. Instead of disagreeing with him I say “you might be right” or “ok if that is what you want”. Another tool I have is appreciating him as a human being I can love and admire as I watch it all work out and see him achieve his goals. I am learning to listen, offer my opinion and accept his behavior even when it differs from mine.

I needed to respect my parent’s way of interacting with each other without interfering. I noticed when I listened to my mother I felt uncomfortable with the behavior she tolerates from my father. I can use the tool of acceptance as I watch her chakra programs take charge of how she takes care of herself at this stage of her life. As I try to understand and work with my own chakra programs in my primary relationship, I have come to appreciate that my mother gave me a gift of love. She let me see into some of the intimate moments in her relationship with my father, as a way to teach me how to negotiate better choices in my own.

In my life I am a significant other, daughter, sister, nana, friend, holistic nurse, mentor, coworker and employee. I understand that my chakra programs impact my relationships in each of these roles. Applying the tools of acceptance, respect and appreciation as a way to express love helps me to have more authentic and honest relationships in a loving way.

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