Love is…

One of my favorite things growing up was to read the newspaper. I was a little as the age of four when this started. “Slightly odd reading material for a four year old”, you are probably thinking right now, but I can assure you it’s as true as my love for gems. What may help you to get a clearer picture as to why is the fact that there was only one page and one very particular thing I was interested in; the daily cartoon.

The most famous newspaper in those days in The Netherlands was called De Telegraaf. It had a daily returning cartoon of the famous New Zealand illustrator Kim Casali on one of the pages called “Love Is…”. For those of you who’ve grown up anywhere between the 60ies to 90ies are probably familiar with her work, for those of you born after I ask you to please google her. The cartoon is only basic frame and has a very simple set up; it features two characters, a cute and innocent looking boy & girl, both naked.

Each cartoon starts with the phrase “Love is…” at the top and is followed by Kim’s definition of what love actually is (“what you fill your home with”, “wearing something of his when he’s away”, and “being partners for life” are some of the endings to give an example). From the age of four this cartoon was one of the highlights of my day, each was another opportunity for me to see these uber cute idols teaching me what love truly meant.

It was something I looked forward everyday, every day being a new opportunity to learn about love and it’s meaning.

Little did I realize that it slowly created a belief that love was something you needed a partner for. Love to me was something that looked like the cartoons I had grown up with. I didn’t have the clarity or mental capacity to see that love comes in many different shapes and forms, the “Love is…” cartoon only being a very small part of the entire spectrum of love that fills this world.

One of my favorite things growing up was to read the newspaper. I was a little as the age of four when this started. “Slightly odd reading material for a four year old”, you are probably thinking right now, but I can assure you it’s as true as my love for gems. What may help you to get a clearer picture as to why is the fact that there was only one page and one very particular thing I was interested in; the daily cartoon.

The most famous newspaper in those days in The Netherlands was called De Telegraaf. It had a daily returning cartoon of the famous New Zealand illustrator Kim Casali on one of the pages called “Love Is…”. For those of you who’ve grown up anywhere between the 60ies to 90ies are probably familiar with her work, for those of you born after I ask you to please google her. The cartoon is only basic frame and has a very simple set up; it features two characters, a cute and innocent looking boy & girl, both naked.

Each cartoon starts with the phrase “Love is…” at the top and is followed by Kim’s definition of what love actually is (“what you fill your home with”, “wearing something of his when he’s away”, and “being partners for life” are some of the endings to give an example). From the age of four this cartoon was one of the highlights of my day, each was another opportunity for me to see these uber cute idols teaching me what love truly meant.

It was something I looked forward everyday, every day being a new opportunity to learn about love and it’s meaning.

Little did I realize that it slowly created a belief that love was something you needed a partner for. Love to me was something that looked like the cartoons I had grown up with. I didn’t have the clarity or mental capacity to see that love comes in many different shapes and forms, the “Love is…” cartoon only being a very small part of the entire spectrum of love that fills this world.

Today I’m a bit older and a bit wiser (thankfully) due to the many experiences I have both lived and experienced when it come to love, and I’m able to appreciate this famous and actually beautifully written and deeply layered cartoon used by the media for what it is; one variety of the spectrum called love.

With Valentines Day coming up and the increase of romantic social media posts and consumer adverts fast increasing, I felt it to be a good time to explain why I choose not to follow the Valentines Day hype that has become the norm in society nowadays. Somehow we’ve ended up in a society that celebrates one very standard type of romantic love, dismissing any other form of love and instead creating a space of making those that are single or in a relationship that doesn’t fit the standard format feel left out or even unloved. As a single mother myself I can share with you that I used to feel the pressure society tries to lay on those that don’t fit the picture perfect image they portray. One can easily start to wonder “There must be something very wrong with me for not having a partner to celebrate Valentines Day with”, or feel that they are “unlucky” or “unlovable” according to societies standards. “Oh well” the media simply replies, “there’s always next year” as a positive afterthought.

I’m a huge believer in love, for me love is at the essence of who we are and I choose everyday to let it be my guide in every word I speak, every action I take and every creation I make. I believe love cannot be contained and requires to flow constantly, the more it continues to flow within each of use between us, the more it grows and increases. I do not believe it’s something we should turn on or off, depending on what day or occasion it is, nor do I believe its something that needs to be proofed. It’s a gift we all have and a gift we are able to share, limitlessly, every day of our lives.

I also believe it comes in many different forms, all coming back to the same essence. The love between a husband and wife or a mother and child, between friends, ond of course lets not forget self love, may differ in the way of expression, but the essence remains the same.

And so I choose not to enter the consumer playfield created by media and society, instead I will continue to celebrate each and every form of love, whether it be self love, romantic love between partners or parental love, each and every one of these have their own right and their own equal value to those involved.

I choose to celebrate love every single day, over and over again, love for myself, my daughter, my soul family and clients, my two dogs, and you reading this. I encourage you to do the same this Valentines Day, and every other day prior or after this. Let’s come back to a place where we are free to accept and express love in all its different forms and colors, creating a feeling of belonging for everyone, regardless what your relationship status is.

Each of my creations is made by me in love and as a celebration to all beautiful forms of love. I have clients who have bought a pice of jewelry for their mother, some clients who I have assisted in creating something precious for themself, men that have chosen an engagement ring for their fiancee to be, wedding rings for couples about to enter a life long commitment to one another, each client and each story beautiful and unique in its own way, each one a prefect representation and celebration of love.

And so I wish that you will celebrate your Valentines Day this year exactly as you choose to celebrate it, as your own tribute to yourself and your own authentic love.

With love,
Anouk Wijgergangs

Anouk @Nova Diamonds

Born & raised in the birthplace of the diamond trade, Amsterdam, and in a traditional Jewish family, I had been surrounded by diamonds and gemstones pretty much from birth. One of my earliest memories if where my grandma used to take me to mineral & gemstone trade shows and it is exactly there where my curiosity and passion for working with crystal and gems was born. Over the years I developed a solid foundation of knowledge on gemstones and crystals, as well as working with them for energetic and healing purposes.

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