Hamel: A little bit of… love

Opinion Editor Peyton Hamel begins her series “A little bit of…” with some love before yet another socially distanced Valentine’s Day. 

Peyton Hamel

Editor’s Note: This column is a part of the “A little bit of…” series. 

I have to admit, I missed writing to you all. It’s been nearly a year since the “Happy Journal” series, since the beginning of social distancing, quarantine and the pandemic. I have to admit something else: we are coping better than I thought we would, but not enough to where people are feeling better.

To be honest, we all might be a little bit of a mess. Our mental health is a mess. Our economy is a mess (although the GameStop incident was pretty amusing). Our vaccination distribution is a mess. Congress and the Senate are a mess. The list isn’t exhaustive. 

Because of our mass of messes, I think we all need a little bit of love. How fitting it is that Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, too. One of our wonderful columnists, Eileen Tyrrell, put one way to love beautifully in her most recent column “Show yourself some love this Sunday.” Self-love is important, and I know most of you know this because it’s been sprawled across the tabloids for more than a year. Have you been self-loving? Do I need to check up on you? (Honestly, if you need to, please email me.)

Finding ways to find a little bit of love is difficult, but I hate cliches to explain something. They’re too general and I tend to not listen to them because of their unoriginality. So I’m not going to give you one. Try this on instead: ground yourself. Ground yourself in loving the things you used to love. Ground yourself by surrounding yourself with those you love. And ground yourself in loving the little things. Did you see the snow yesterday? I do love those fluffy, uniquely beautiful snowflakes that float from the sky. It makes the dead cold of winter a little less miserable. 

I have my own philosophy to find my “little bit of love.” I look at the Daily Dose every morning and appreciate the Opinion section. There happens to be a lot of cool stuff in there. I water my plants if necessary and I try not to strain myself by hustling to the bus (although, lately, this seems impossible). Maybe it’s time to formulate a philosophy of your own. 

If your heart hasn’t been full in a while, I want you to at least have a full heart for a day, especially on Valentine’s Day. Ever heard the song “A Little Bit of Love” by Brenda Russell (R&B artist in 1979)? A little bit of love really can go a long way. She sings to the world that it’s never too late, even to start today. Although going through a little bit of heartbreak, even Kesha knows a little bit of love can also go a long way. But I think JP Cooper says it best:

“When you try to find the words but they ain’t flowin’

When you’re sittin’ by the phone but no one’s callin’

Call me up and I’ll be on my way

When you’re acting like you’re fine but you ain’t copin’

And you’re listenin’ to too much Leonard Cohen

Hallelujah’s just a prayer away

If you’re lost and alone in the dark and you’re all cried out

If you’re bruised and you’re broken, I’m hoping you’ll hear me out

Sometimes everybody needs a

Little bit of love”

Lyrics don’t lie. I don’t want you to have a full heart because it’s Valentine’s Day, but I do think Valentine’s Day is great practice for having great expectations every day concerning how to love. 

It’s okay to be bruised and broken. It’s okay to have those down days. It’s okay not to love yourself for a few days or want to love yourself. You are not expected to feel any type of way.

But just remember: a little bit of love can go a long way.