In a world filled with pain and suffering I often remind myself and my daughter that love is a verb. Not a feeling, but an action. It’s a choice I make every day as often as possible as the alternative is not enjoyable. I had a conversation with my 13 year old daughter yesterday about the importance of loving others, despite how they are behaving or showing up in our life. The idea that she can choose love, always, no matter what her ‘friends‘ are doing around her puts her in a position of great power and control with respect to her emotions.
This idea of love as a choice is very important and unfortunately Merriam-Webster defines love very differently. My experience talking with others about love is that a great part of our society associates love as a feeling. And since Hollywood and fiction romance novels have scripted us to believe that we are not responsible for being in love, rather it is a product of our feelings, it can be easy to go victim to the feeling of love.
Sadly, if our feelings have influence over our actions then ignoring the power of choice results in being reactive and resolving ourselves of responsibility. I want nothing more than for my daughter to grow up being happy, healthy, safe, successful and secure. This is my mission in life and I embrace it whole-heartedly.
Love is something I do;
a sacrifice I make;
a gift I give.
Teaching her to love first at age 13, even when it is difficult, unpopular (a big concern in 8th grade) or not reciprocated all starts with me modeling the choice to he every day. It’s not always easy loving when a relationship breaks, someone lies or someone close to you dies. Attachment can be rough.
It’s during these difficult times that words are not always easy to come by. Luckily my actions speak volumes she can easily understand.