My daughters still love to snuggle with me in bed.
I’m supremely grateful that they still enjoy my company, and I admit, I love snuggling because, it’s very close to napping.
In our family we like to offer constant, daily moments of love to each other, because love is action.
That action is as simple as a hug, a kiss, holding hands, patting a shoulder, scratching a back, helping to serve each other without asking, conversations about our day, and how we felt, helping with homework, or problems, sharing excitement, having each other’s back, saving a treat we get to share with each other, making sacrifices of our own time, spending time with each other, and well, the list is easily endless.
It’s always fun to have big, huge, loud, magnificent expressions of our love, but it is the small, consistent, even quiet moments that build, and sustain a strong foundation.
Of course mixed in with all those actions, are also the moments where we hurt each other’s feelings, or we say the wrong thing, or we forget something, or the sarcasm gets out of hand, or we miscommunicate, and this list can also go on forever. When we fill our lives with good experiences, constantly, intentionally, and keep that as our core, I’ve seen that even messy moments, can result in moments of forgiveness, change, and acceptance.
I work to be present and intentional in my actions, and the words I use. Some days are easier than others, and some are slightly more difficult. Taken altogether, no experience, or moment is wasted, they all build towards the same goal.
I want my daughters to know in the very marrow of their bones that I love them just as they are. I want them to know that if we striped away all the talents, abilities, and excess accessories that we all inhabit, that I love them simply because they exist. I want them to know that my love would go to the ends of the earth, and back; that my love would fight fiercely for them, and for their hearts’ desires. I want them to know that in me, they will always have safety and peace.
There are moments, in the quiet, when I ask my daughters, during our one-on-one time, “do you know how much I love you?” I look them square in the eyes, because I am hopeful that they will know, one day, what it feels like to love them. I’m a believer that if our childhoods weren’t what we hoped they were, we can change the path for our children. We can give them what we wished we had, and parenting with empathy creates new stories, new paths, for future generations to follow.
I’m grateful for the time I’m blessed to have with my girls each day. I remember when going to the grocery store by myself was like an oasis, because I could actually get my list completed, quickly, on my own. These days, they aren’t always keen to run errands with me, they would rather be creating art, writing, or a video, or some other fun project; but boy, do I love it when they do join me. I revel in their company, their conversation, and their ideas. It’s also why we love to travel as a family together. When we have new experiences and explore, there’s no one else I’d rather share the moment with, or to relive the adventure again.
I hear from parents that are in the throes of teenagers tell me how challenging it is raising and understanding teens. I’ve also heard how teens pull away, and maybe it’s a blessing in disguise. Why? Just thinking about my kids growing up, going to college, starting a career, settling down with their own families, makes me well-up with bittersweet tears. Perhaps, the challenges of teenagers, is a way we can start to let go. Maybe?
I believe we should tell our loved ones that we love them. I believe we should express it daily, and not just assume they know, by mere coincidence of our bloodline. I believe words of love should be weighty, filled with proof of our deeds. In the end, love is action. When we pair that action with the power of our voice, it echoes deep into our souls.
How do you love in your family? Let us know in the comments.
ps. Today I’m in Chicago taping a show with the Steve Harvey Show. Wish me luck!
This month we discuss themes of love and family. Read more from my fellow #AsianMomBloggers:
Maria at Bicultural Mama: 5 Girl Names Using the Chinese Word for Love
Grace at HapaMama: Different Love Languages
Phyllis at Napkin Hoarder: A Six Year Old’s Love Advice
Stephanie at A Family Lives Here: Love is Action
Thien-Kim at I’m Not the Nanny: 5 Things I Love About My Family
Ilina at Dirt and Noise: Imposter Parenting