Happy Valentine’s Day! I love you all, and want to share this message of love. You can watch the video and/or read the transcript below. We talk about appreciating all forms of love, how Spelling allows me to share more love with my loved ones, and my hopes for a romantic relationship one day.
T: Hi Danny!
D: Hi Tara and Friends!
T: Hi friends! You might notice at the end of sentences, Danny is saying “awesome exclamation points” and/or “done and done” and those are just little loops that he’s doing these days in case you’re wondering what he’s saying
D: I am so enthusiastic in my compulsions!
T: Yes you are enthusiastic in your compulsions, as in many other areas in your life. So, is there anything in particular you want to say to everyone today?
D: Happy Valentine’s Day!
T: So what do you think of Valentine’s Day, Dan? What’s your take on it?
D: It is so easy to be cynical about its commercialization, but I choose to embrace the spirit of appreciating love in all its forms!
T: That’s how I’ve come to view Valentine’s Day, too. Like, I love the idea of Galentine’s Day, celebrating the wonderful women in my life. It’s also the day we chose to celebrate the birthdays of our 2 dogs – they are both rescue dogs, don’t know the exact date of birth, we just know it was in the earlier part of the year. So, it’s a day that we celebrate that very special, unconditional love between canine and human. Do you have anything to add?
D: I am so feeling loved and loving and grateful for the love in my life!
T: That’s a nice way to feel, Dan… I feel the same way.
D: How do you view today?
T: Well, as I mentioned, similar to you, I love the idea of embracing all different forms of love and care. Definitely when I was younger, I think a lot of people fall into this kind of trap of obsessing over romantic love and thinking that you need to have a partner or another half or a significant other and that’s the love, the romantic love that really matters and defines your life. I’ve kind of made some fairly poor decisions in my life based on that priority. As I’ve gotten older and wiser and figuring myself out more, I’ve realized how much these other forms of love matter to me and how rich my life is in those forms of love.
I am very lucky this year to also enjoy a wonderful partner in romantic love, but I also treasure the love of family and friends and pets (though that’s included in family). Especially being able to spend the last two years with you and getting even closer to you, that love of family is really what stands out to me today. That was a really long answer. Too much information?
D: No, perfectly put!
T: Do you have anything to say at this point?
T: Ok! I guess one thing that has been on my mind ever since we started exploring fluency together, but really on my mind lately – I don’t know why, in particular – I have friends who are very well-meaning and they’ll say, “It’s so amazing what you’re doing for your brother.” And I appreciate their appreciation, but I think what often gets lost in the mix –
D: I love you so much and I needed to tell you!
T: I love you so much. Thank you for telling me!
As I was saying – what I think that people don’t often understand: Yes, communication is a big positive change in your life, it’s opened up your world, and your benefit from communication is our primary motive. But what we as your loved ones have gained is so huge, so significant –
D: Yes – don’t make me cry!
T: I’ll try not to make myself cry. We also gained the ability to experience your love more. You can express your love to us – am I embarrassing you?
D: Stop, don’t stop!
T: I’ll try to be brief. We get to feel more of the love that you’ve had for us all of this time and deepen that relationship. The love you have for us is just so… he has so much profound understanding, so much empathy and compassion, but he’s also very kindly firm with us when he needs to guide us in the right way. And the fact that you can guide us to help you manifest your gestures of love – like, I’ll never forget the first time you said, “I want to take you out for lunch.” He takes us out for meals, buys us presents, it’s just amazing to experience that.
D: I am so proud to be able to express my love!
T: And we can better love you by better knowing you. And back to my original point, when my friends are, “Oh, it’s so wonderful what you’re doing for your brother,” ok, fair enough, having access to communication in his daily life is clearly a huge benefit to him. But I’ve gained a closer relationship with someone who really is a soulmate, the best ally that anyone could hope for. And it’s a level of understanding and care in my life that I kind of had always wanted and it’s just amazing to have.
D: I am so touched by this!
T: Good, Dan. But another thing that we’ve been talking about, and I don’t know if you want to change the topic already Danny, is how do you feel about today and how do you feel about romantic love? Or you can take it any direction you want to.
D: I am so feeling so much love in my life from family and friends and community and also through my budding mindfulness practice.
T: Yeah, kind of having that universal love – it’s been a joy watching you dive more into that world
D: But I am also hopeful for romantic love one day and I am dreaming of a relationship of deep understanding and respect and inspiration with a woman Speller!
T: That would be beautiful, Danny! You would be an amazing partner, with all of the empathy and caring and creativity and fun that you have in your heart. She’ll be a lucky lady!
D: Thank you!
T: Is there anything else you want to say about that?
D: I am so shy to share it because I am so used to feeling undesirable and isolated and not attractive because I am disabled. But I am blossoming in confidence and I am certain I will find that love!
T: You more than deserve that kind of love, honey.
D: I am so wanting to also share how my family’s love lifts me up and surrounds me every day, and that my father and my mother created a family of vibrant love!
T: Yeah. I’m just getting emotional because I’m thinking about our dad, and how – no matter how difficult he could be – he was at his core such a loving and caring person. Oh man, speaking of making us cry… another gift of getting closer to Danny is that I feel a very similar kind of love from you. So it’s nice to get to experience that.
D: Totally! And I am so forever touched by that legacy!
T: Well, we’ve been chatting about 25 minutes, and you have a meeting coming up in 5 minutes, so I guess we should wrap it up though I’ve enjoyed this chat a lot. What do you want to leave our friends with?
D: I love you all and I hope you feel loved today and every day!
T: Anything else?
D: Not for now. Bye, loved ones!