as simple as a balloon at the grocery store -- sydney wallace

The Great SYDWAL. Where do I even begin with her? 
When I said earlier last week that staying in Seattle for the summer was a blessing in disguise, meeting Sydney and Averill were huge parts of that blessing. 

They moved to Seattle for their summer internships and I'm so grateful they did; we had so many adventures and shared so many tears, laughs as roommates. Sydney and I have been able to do so much together since we moved back to Utah (me for my job, her to finish up her senior year at BYU) and I'm so proud of her (she landed an AMAZING job back in Connecticut when she graduates). I am so grateful to have her and this dear friendship in my life. 

Love. Instantly a list of songs and movies pop into my head. Love. Red hearts, roses, and chocolates come to mind. Love. The butterfly feeling In the pit of your stomach, fireworks in the sky, kissing in the rain - that kind of stuff. 

Well, I don't know if I've ever experienced that kind of love. 

Sure, I've had relationships and crushes and daydreams. I've definitely written my first name with someone else's last name. I've experienced heartache and rejection and eaten all the ice cream I could handle to make myself feel better. But I still don't think any of that was caused by love. 

So, what possible insights can I have on this subject? Maybe I've never been in love, but I definitely have experienced other kinds of love. 

My first memory of experiencing love was when I was very young. I was at the supermarket with my mother and sister. I was probably five or six, and my sister had to be one or two years old. This grocery store used to give out helium balloons and cookies to children who were shopping with their parents. Both my sister and I had received balloons and were happily eating our cookies while my mom purchased her items. As we left the store, my little sister let go of her balloon and it flew away, high in the sky. She burst into tears. My mom tried to console her, and while we were standing there, I realized I didn't want her to be sad. I handed my sister my balloon, and her face lit up. I was out a balloon, but making her happy was much better than the happiness from a balloon from the grocery store. 

(me and my sister through the years)

1 Nephi 11:22-23 says, "And I answered him, saying: Yea, it is the love of God, which sheddeth itself abroad in the hearts of the children of men; wherefore, it is the most desirable above all things. And he spake unto me, saying: Yea, and the most joyous to the soul." 

Love is what gives me hope. The love I receive from others give me confidence and strength as I take on the challenges of the world. The love I give to others helps me become a better person, and I only feel true joy when I am loving someone else.

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