PERSPECTIVES ON LOVE
Near where we live there is an old tree with a large nest, an eagle’s nest. It seems it has been there for a long time and every spring the eagles return and lay eggs while the locals flock to take rare photos of the eagles.
The other day I was driving down the road to another destination and while driving I was looking for the nest, not knowing its exact location. I arrived at my destination, having not seen the nest. On my return trip, now travelling in the other direction, and what do I see practically jumping out of the tree at me, the nest. A different Perspective.
Recently I had the occasion to make a list of the things that contributed to me falling in love with my husband. After completing that list, I then was to make a list of the things that I let anger me about my husband. While contemplating these lists, I had a realization; they were similar. The same things I fell in love with were now the things that could trigger my anger. What changed in thirty plus years; Perspective.
Recently, I was on the phone with my daughter in Pennsylvania. She was reprimanding her daughter or complaining about something her daughter had done. I tried to tell her to stop complaining or reprimanding and enjoy the special person her daughter was. Later, when I thought about this conversation, it dawned on me; I am guilty of the same thing with my eight year old daughter. Again; Perspective.
In each of these situations all that is needed is a small change of perspective and a whole new exciting vision is opened up. Coming at the tree from a different direction I was able to see what had been invisible before. When I looked at my husband’s traits and realized they were the same on both lists, I began to think how easy it is to fall into the habit of looking at things from the wrong side. It’s like the old question is the glass half full or half empty. The answer depends on our point of view, the glass and the water don’t change, so we must. If I look at the traits as bad things, they will make me bitter and angry. I will spend hours stewing and thinking of bad things to do and say. However, if I chose to love and look at things from a positive perspective, I can see what I have done wrong and maybe even his reason for his response. He begins to not look so much like the evil person my mind has been making him into, but instead the wonderful man that I fell in love with. Just a little change in perspective and attitude changes the whole atmosphere in the household and spreads to everything we do either separately or as a family.
A change in perspective also changes the way I see my daughter. A week or so ago she had a day off from school, but I didn’t have a day off from writing. So, I worked in my office while she quietly watched television. I heard her moving around, but didn’t pay much attention to it. If anything was wrong she certainly would let me know. Occasionally she would pop into my office and we would hug and I told her the toll for visiting my office was that she would receive a million kisses. This didn’t seem to bother her, because she returned frequently. After a few hours she came in carrying a washcloth to show me. She was very proud; she had taken a bunch of iron on decals and ironed them onto the wash cloth to make blankets for her dolls. This whole morning with her interruptions and now the washcloths, which I have too few of anyway, could have really made me angry. Instead I chose to respond in love. I praised her blankets while thinking I can always get new ones, but this moment can never be had again. I hugged her, gave her a million more kisses and checked on her project to ensure she was being safe. We ended up having a lovely day with lots of kisses and hugs and memories of time shared. (Extra bonus; Blankets for eight dolls and one dragon.)
Things don’t always go that smoothly. I often have to remind myself just as I did my older daughter, they are only children once. We need to experience both the good and the bad with them and focus on the good. Hug them, love them and most of all remember that like ourselves they are a gift from God to be treasured. The same holds true for our spouses. When things are looking bad and you feel that anger rising, stop and look at things from a different Perspective. The difference will amaze you.