I have been married for 32 years and I have the gift of unconditional love in my life. Hopefully we will all experience unconditional love at least once in our lives as it is the kind of love that we should receive from our parents; it is the kind of love that we should have for our children. I think about the way that I love my daughter; there is absolutely nothing that she can do or say that would ever change my love for her; I love her without condition.
Unconditional love doesn’t mean that we don’t discipline our children or disagree with our spouse or parents. Unconditional love means that in spite of our shortcomings and mistakes, we are loved/loving. We are loved right through the tough stuff and we are forgiven. Unconditional love requires forgiveness; the two go hand in hand. As a parent, I find unconditional love to be a very natural and simple thing. As a wife, I have to admit, there have been times that I have been challenged. To love someone when they have deeply hurt you requires an immense amount of forgiveness but it also requires that you look beyond how you have been wronged and delve deep into the waters of your relationship and how you came to this place and these circumstances. It is never simple. To love unconditionally, we must let go of anger and resentment; unconditional love will be muddied if you hold onto negative feelings.
Unconditional love is more about what you do than what you say; it is an action, and not a feeling. I learned this from my husband and the way that he loves me. He acts like he loves me. He loves me by letting me know when I am off track, he shows love with simple acts like having my coffee ready for me in the morning and making me my “nest” on the couch so I am comfy/cozy while I drink it, he pushes me to grow, he shoves me out of my comfort zone, and he looks at me with eyes so full of love that it almost bursts my heart. It is more about what you give than what you get. If you do things for others with expectations (even if all that you are expecting in return is a feeling), or If you have to do something or be a certain way toward someone in order to receive love in return, that is conditional love.
Unconditional love should feel invigorating, energizing, liberating and gratifying. If you are feeling burdened or weighed down by what you are perceiving as unconditional love, you may be on the wrong track. Unconditional love does NOT mean that you are a door mat; be cautious that you do not become a people-pleaser. Loving unconditionally doesn’t mean that you are constantly seeking to make someone comfortable; sometimes they need to go through difficulties to grow. Growth and pain are part of our journey as human beings.
Love yourself without condition. This will sometimes mean that you are not on the same page with another and it is O.K. Forgive yourself and let go of anger, frustration and resentments.
Practice unconditional love by doing spontaneous things for others with NO expectations of anything in return. You will come to recognize what it feels like to truly experience love without condition and the absolute joy that will fill your heart by sharing it.
“Nothing you become will disappoint me; I have no preconception that I’d like to see you be or do. I have no desire to forsee you, only to discover you. You can’t disappoint me”.