“Mom, are you and Dad still in love?”
While I was cooking dinner one evening my teenage daughter asked me, “Mom, are you and Dad still in love?”
Now typcially when a question like that comes up, its for one of two reasons. Either;
a) they are thinking about what love is because they’re experiencing it for the first time themselves, and/or
b) they have sensed some tension in the home and are concerned about your relationship.
There may be another explanation, but these are the two most common reasons you might hear that question. Either way, my response wasn’t one that I put a great deal of thought into unfortunately. I knew she had been in a serious relationship for the past two years so she was probably more curious about it from that stand point, but I told her that we are in love ‘at times’.
Its tough to say ‘yes’ to the feeling of being ‘in love’ during challenges or the mundane parts of life, but I didn’t go into a long explanation since I was trying to get dinner ready. This response didn’t help her, however, and I could see that.
After giving it more thought, I told her that when you haven’t yet been married for 30+ years, you don’t know what its like to go through childbirths, deaths, jobs, houses, careers and the ups and downs of life together. When you’re young you think you’ll be in love forever, when in fact, your feelings waiver as time and circumstances change. That doesn’t mean, however, that you aren’t ‘in love’.
“Love is a choice. Love is Unconditional”
This is the kind of response I wished I had given my daughter that night. Fortunately she’s wise enough to understand the unspoken moments when her father and I lovingly embrace after a long day of work, or when we sneak away for the weekend to hike or bike by ourselves, it means that we are still very much in love. Even after 30 years of choices.
We are given a choice in all things so we can develop our own responses, reactions and relationships. But if there’s one thing I know for sure, its that we don’t fall ‘in’ or ‘out’ of love. We choose love through all things.
When I lost my nephew, my sister, my company, and then had an accident that caused a brain injury all within the same year, my husband chose to stay put. Did he have the feelings of being ‘in love’? I sincerely doubt it. I’m quite certain he felt just as much loss and grief as I did that year.
The feeling of being in love, is much like the feeling of prosperity in all things, which comes when all is right with the world. Fortunately we both understand that lasting love is not determined by the one being loved, but by the one who is choosing to love.
To tell my teenage daughter to beware of a love that is based on time, appearances or circumstances, is like saying “Honey, go ahead and close your eyes so you can see better.” It just doesn’t make sense in a world that puts appearances above character, sex above emotional connectedness and instant gratification over long term gain.
A love that “bares all things, believes all things, hopes all things and endures all things” is a love that lasts a life time. This choice, to love beyond all that brings you down, is what being ‘in love’ is all about.
If you found this post valuable in any way, we hope you’ll share it. We want to let women everywhere know about a love that far surpasses anything they might have in their lives. A love that speaks to their soul by being ‘in love’ with God, yourself and others through the mundane and the hardships.
PS. If you haven’t joined The Day Of Love yet you don’t know what you’re missing. Be INSPIRED by our panel of guest speakers that will rock your world. I know this because they rock mine all the time. Click on the words “The DOL View” and it will take you to our homepage.