Saturday, November 23, 2013

Unconditional Love

I have a favorite tree. I fell in love with it when its leaves started changing in early October. I took a picture of it at its peak of beautiful color (top) and then one after most of the leaves had fallen off. When we round the bend that leads to my tree in the morning, Sadie now says, "Oh no, Mommy! Look at your tree! It's naked. You need a new favorite tree." And I took that as the perfect opportunity to share a little story about unconditional love. I said, "Baby, I will not change my favorite tree just because its leaves fell off. That would be like me changing my favorite family if their hair got grey or they got a bruise on their faces. That is still my favorite tree and I will love it as it changes through the seasons. It's still a beautiful tree. God painted it oranges and yellows for the fall and now he is getting it ready for the cold winter months. In the spring, God will put beautiful, bright green leaves on that same tree and it will stay green and lush through the summer. We don't change what we love because what we love changes." It was so surreal when she replied, "Okay, Mommy. I will always love you, even if you get a hair cut." I mean, it was such a small understanding of such a big thing, but I think she may have gotten my point. All because of my favorite, beautiful tree.
 And then, we have these sweet, sweet munchkins...

I thought I knew what unconditional love was. Then, I had children and I really learned what it means to unconditionally love someone. I will always love my parents, my brother, my husband. I just will. I know that. I will be angry and hurt and sad, but I will always love them. The love for your children is so impenetrable, though. Imagine yourself in your brand new suit, driving your brand new car, and your toddler just has to give you a running leap of a hug to say, "goodbye," for the day. And that gorgeous, loving child is covered in chocolate chip pancakes, butter, and maple syrup, while you're holding an opened travel mug of piping hot coffee, just ready to take a sip. Yes, when you are burned, possibly in the second degree, covered in coffee and pancake mess, your car and suit are stained, and you are absolutely late for work, you love that little one more than your heart can even comprehend. It's just amazing. I'm so blessed to know what it feels like to be unconditionally loved by God and I can only hope that I can teach and show my children that love and how to give it.

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Just like Ke$ha (minus the craziness and whatnot), YOUR LOVE is my drug!