The following post comes from a very sweet blogger named Mara Kofoed. She and her husband, Danny, have documented their love story for the rest of us. I am posting this for my daughter and for all the other teenage girls out there. Their whole love story is inspiring, but the following insights she shares are of particular importance. I believe that if any person in any relationship (besides parent child) depends on the other for their happiness, it is not only unfair, but doomed from the beginning. This is post #2 in a series she calls, “The Most Important Things I’ve Ever Learned (About Love). Enjoy!
The Most Important Things I’ve Ever Learned (About Love) – #2
|(Photos by the photographer, Rachel Thurston.)|
You ready for this? It’s a lot to absorb. But in the weeks following my first husband’s departure, it was this nitty gritty that caused strangers on the streets of New York to stop me and tell me that I was “glowing” and “radiant”. (I wanted so badly to tell them the real reason why…)
- To really show a healthy kind of love to your spouse, children, parents, family, coworkers, or friends, your emotional well-being cannot be dependent on them. The source of your wholeness & your security as a person needs to be based on something else. For me, the ups and downs of my well-being used to hinge on the love or affection from my husband, or my husband’s (or my own) approval of my looks, or the status of my baby-making, or on the goal of one day having a successful business. I know what it’s like to not have any of those things and to feel pretty miserable about it. But now, I know better. And so, instead of basing my deepest happiness & well-being on my husband or unborn children, I get my strength & healing from tapping into what I know to be the most powerful force of goodness & love & strength for all: being at one with God. That’s a pretty tall order. But it’s available to me at ALL times, no matter what my circumstances are. Until I was 30, I had no clue how to really do this. It turns out that anything religious didn’t really mean a whole lot to me before then. But in a desperate state, I decided to give it a go & see what would happen. I tried to feel that oneness every single day, and that’s when the really, really deep & independent peace started. And one of the best consequences of this? Now having the sweetest marriage I could ever imagine. 🙂
- When your real, deep peace is not dependent on your husband or kids, you remove that pressure from them to constantly satisfy you. Know any moms or dads that hang their own personal happiness & well being around their children’s necks and display deep inadequacy/disappointment/depression if their kids do not fulfill all their dreams of perfection? Or, do you know any wives that are miserable because their husbands don’t “fulfill” them in all the ways that they want to be fulfilled? I see it all the time. No matter how it’s done, if someone is basing their own personal happiness on the behavior of another, no matter how much they think they love that person, they are actually not showing love at all. Instead, they’re loading on an unhealthy amount of pressure, which can be felt for a lifetime. I know way too many adults that sadly STILL feel inadequate or unsure of themselves, due to the pressure of their mothers or fathers.
P.S. If you ever get the opportunity to attend a huge concert in the Great Lawn in Central Park, just do it. We saw the Black Eyed Peas on Friday night and despite not even being fans of the group AND despite the rain, there was something just awesome about being in that park with 60,000 people.