We grow up sometimes loving our parents unconditionally. I said sometimes because there a quite a few people who don’t love their parents, conditionally or unconditionally. They have their reasons and this blog post is not about why some people don’t love their parents, but rather more about those we almost can’t help but love unconditionally…namely, our kids.
A lot of new parents talk about how their lives have changed since the birth of their new baby. Yeah, sometimes it’s about the lack of sleep or the cost of diapers, but often it’s about the feeling they get when they first meet their child. It’s often an overwhelming feeling that’s too hard to describe in words. All you know is, the second you see and hold that child, the reality of the situation swings hold of you and you’re left with a feeling you might only have again at the birth of another child. That’s not to say you lose the feeling after this. Instead, oftentimes, the feeling grows.
For most of us “normal” people, our children completely take over our lives. There is no sacrifice too great when it comes to our little ones. We can be watching the news, or football, or a cooking show, but the minute our eyes turn to that little toddler playing with blocks or dolls or just about anything, we get that overwhelming feeling all over again. We just love them. They don’t have to do anything special, although everything they do is special, but just looking at the little co-creation sitting in front of you is enough to bring on tears of love.
Even when our kids screw up, most of us continue to love them. They can grow up to be a mass murderer, but even though we don’t condone what they did, we still love them. They can become burger flippers or doctors, we still love them the same.
When they grow up and leave home, we find ourselves tearfully reminiscing about when they were little and needed us for almost every little thing. Even as adults they will often call or visit and still need advice from us as parents. They may have gone through a phase where they felt they didn’t need us and knew better than anything we could suggest, but they usually turn around and recognize the unconditional love we have for them. That’s what keeps them coming back even after they really screwed up. They know we’ll open the door and let them in. We almost can’t help it.
There are other types of unconditional love, but I believe the love between a child and parents to be the best example of unconditional love there is. Nobody has to prove that they love, just seeing their face brings it out. Heck, sometimes it’s just a memory of their face or something they did in the past that brings it out.
My kids are all grown now and living their own lives. Some have children of their own and some have yet to reach that point if they do at all. I find myself feeling the same way about my grandkids, the unconditional love thing, and even though it’s not the great mystery it was when I first had a child, it’s still pretty strong. I also know that the love I have for my children is as strong as it was when they were born or little or even teenage years. They simply cannot make it just go away…not that they’ve tried…I don’t think…
All I know is that I love my children with everything that is in me and still wouldn’t hesitate to give my life for theirs if needed. There is no condition attached to this other than they are my children. Just reminiscing about them, both as kids and as adults, makes me teary-eyed. This is a feeling I cherish.