A Valentine’s Day Playlist

I recommend listening to these songs throughout the year, but they would make a good playlist for Valentine’s Day too. Not all of them involve romantic love. Some are focused on friendship and one is full of compassion towards the self.

Angels (the xx)
A lovely, melancholic song that flows through you.

Beam Me Up (Pink)
Not a Star Trek song specifically (though go ahead and think about Star Trek characters if you want). It’s a tender, gut-wrenching song – when you miss someone so badly and want to see them again, just for a minute if you can’t have more than that.

Bridge Over Trouble Water (Simon & Garfunkel)
Uplifting. Through dark times and shining dreams, loyalty endures, and I don’t care if that sounds cheesy.

Dance Me to the End of Love (Leonard Cohen)
So beautiful and should be played at weddings. Also, here’s a gorgeous cover performed by Madeleine Peyroux.

Don’t You Forget About Me (Simple Minds)
Part of my childhood was an ’80s childhood. And the music video for this song (at the link) is probably the ’80iest of all the music videos that ever came out of the ’80s. All kidding aside, I really like this song.

Dreams (The Cranberries)
“Totally amazing mind, so understanding and so kind…” The wonder of love, the wonder of the meeting of minds and hearts.

Happy (Marina and the Diamonds, in the acoustic band version of her song)
I wouldn’t go so far as to call this a personal anthem, but when I first listened to it, it struck deep. This is the one that has a gentle compassion towards the self, a love that may have been absent before.

Kind and Generous (Natalie Merchant)
When you feel appreciation for lovely people in your life.

Misty (Ella Fitzgerald)
Meltingly tender love song, and Ella Fitzgerald is a rare gem.

La Vie en Rose (Rhiannon Giddens)
I love when Edith Piaf sings it, but I’m linking to Giddens, because hers was a beautiful surprise. I didn’t think I’d want to hear anyone else sing this but Piaf.

You’re My Best Friend (Queen)
People know Queen best for their grander pieces, but I’ve long had a soft spot for this quiet, moving one.

Is This Really Love?

If someone gives you the message that they’ll love you only if you’re less capable, kind, intelligent, or courageous than you really are (or can be), what they love is a diminished version of you.

Maybe they don’t love you at all, or maybe their capacity to love is damaged by personal problems, such as a profound insecurity.

When people love each other, they feed each other’s strength. A person who loves you doesn’t try to make you weak and miserable.