My parent's love story...what is true love to you?
Posted Feb 22 2011 2:29pm
This year... has been a tough year.
In light of the circumstances...I would say the good that has come out of it is more love...more love between my parents and I ...more love between them. I didn't really think we needed more love...but I am grateful.
This morning my parents got on the subject of how they met....something I can't believe I haven't heard up until now.
The fact my parents have been married since 1965 is a complete miracle. One that if left this earth now...I could say that I truly experienced and saw three miracles in my lifetime-
The first- The power of unconditional love to change ANYTHING.
The 2nd- The honor of seeing a person change...heal.
The 3rd- The miracle of seeing first hand that all human beings have dark and light in them...if you concentrate on the light...the light will grow...but you must love it all...the good and the bad...that is where TRUE miracles occur with people. This has helped me see in people when I meet them...all aspects...this has helped me see that every person has at least a speck of good them. Focus on the speck? The speck becomes all you see.
It was 1963. My parents were on a double blind date. Just not with each other.
My dad: She was sweet. Very pretty and had a great body.
My mom: I loved his sarcasm. He had the most beautiful blue eyes. Oh, he was a bad boy compared to me. But even then I saw the sweetness and good in him.
They went to Steak n' Shake in WinterPark, Florida, after the movie. My mom kept telling him he had the nicest brown eyes(my dad has the bluest eyes ever:). He thought her teasing was cute.
My dad got her number.
Their first date was to a movie to see The Pink Panther...my dad fell asleep during the movie.
Their second date...they went for ice cream...my mom was so nervous....while talking she was using her hands...as most hotblooded people do...and she dumped the ice cream in my dad's lap.
My dad drove a 1963 black Ford Fastback with a white top and red seats. He smoked like a chimney. He wore a black leather jacket and had an Elvis like snarl on his face most of the time. He went to pool halls and was considered one of the cool people.
My mom was a complete intelligent...wrote poetry...sang in the glee club...didn't even know that people drank...
Somehow these two got married.
My dad: First year we were married ...your mom and I worked on the same street...I was walking down the sidewalk with one of my buddies and saw this woman walking on the opposite side...skirt like 2 feet above her knees...great legs...I said to Gary, “Who the hell is that?” ...Gary said, “That's your wife, dumb ass!”.
My father started as an errand boy for a title insurance company. He learned the business...worked his way up...and had the guts to open up his own. He was a self-taught...self-made man. He went on to own the most successful title insurance company in central Florida at that time...
Then his father died...and my sister and I were born...and with the stress of life...my dad started drinking heavily.
I won't go into all that here...except to say my parents...and my sister and I for that matter..went through about ten years of complete hell.
My mother never gave up. She kicked...screamed...begged...she did it all...but she did not give up on my father. She saw the good...even when he was being his worst...she would not give up on the good.
Hearing them talk today...I had mixed emotions...pride...happiness...sadness...
I left them this morning thinking... my parents taught me well. Yes, they did.
There has been a part of me that I have kind of started beating up over the years. The part of me that came from witnessing my father stop drinking cold turkey when I was 12. Seeing them take the slow...long process of healing with each other...forgiving each other...trusting each other again. The part of me that doesn't return blow for blow...pain for pain...betrayal for betrayal. The part of me that instinctively offers the other cheek.
Now I get angry...and I speak my mind...I can be a scrappy little fighter, for sure...but I won't ever withhold mercy, love, forgiveness or my time...EVER. Not in my nature.
I wonder what my life would be today if I would have witnessed my parents give up? Judge each other to the point of breaking it?
Instead...I see people through kind of a "whole" vision..if this makes sense. I see the good and the bad. I usually always choose the good. And when someone acts out at me the worst? It is as if I don't believe them. Like a kid dressing up in some scary monster costume... trying to scare you...it's just not real. Most people don't know what to do with that. Most people act out so you will reject them..judge them...perpetuate their on going story they have going on...they want you to react to their scary costume.
I have always refused. And when someone offers me poison...I offer another chance.
This confused me at times...in a dog eat dog world...it hasn't always been the popular choice...or the choice that left me unscathed...or the choice that didn't cause people to look at me like I have three heads...it has hurt me more times than not. But I will stand by those choices...that they were the best I could make. They made me stronger...and gave me the choice and do give me the choice to choose love...or it's opposite...indifference. Not hate. You have to love someone to be able to hate them.
This is what my parent's love has taught me.
I don't know why I am sharing this today...except that I feel we need a little more of that kind of love in the world.
Gandhi once said something like this...I am totally paraphrasing here...but when he spoke of peace...he once said that armed peace is not peace.
Armed love is not love. Waiting for someone to make the mistake of hurting you ...then blasting them...this is not love.
Judging yourself... or someone else is not true love. It is love...as I believe all things are love...but it is love from fear...not from truth.
If we could just be unafraid of our shadows...be willing to accept them as beautiful parts of our own makeup...because without it...how would we know what light is? If we could get to the place...we could begin to love like that...other people like that...and medication...and alcohol abuse...and drug abuse...and sex addictions...all these things would become obsolete in our world.
Unconditional love has the power to extract the very best from a person and situation.
Is there someone in your life...you can start to see the light in? Doesn't mean you have to be ok with what they do...or be doormat...or have them in your life...just upon thought of them...can you focus on the speck of light?
Even more importantly...how about with yourself...that is where I am starting today.