Early on, I began to learn what love is not. I knew that love was not what my father was doing to my mother. The memories of my father emotionally, mentally, and physically abusing my mother have not presented themselves to me. One memory I do have is of my mother sitting on the couch, and her desperately trying to explain something to one police of the two officers. My mother informed me that police visits were frequent occurrences.
Still, I must have seen something to report to another family member that my father was abusing my mother.
Then, at age 5, I found out that forcing, blackmailing, or manipulating someone to have sex with you did not qualify as love, either. You ignore no’s, cries, and the person’s attempt to protect himself or herself.
For years, I searched for True Love, and I compiled a definition of what love is and what love is not. This list is not the whole list, but here are some key points.
Love is not:
calling me outside my name,
continuing to hurt me despite my no’s and cries, and attempts to protect myself and stop you from hurting me,
refusing to help me when you see me struggling,
dumping your pain baggage on me,
blaming me for how you feel,
telling me how to think, what to say,
forcing me to do wrong things and against my ethical and moral standards,
refusing to look at my pain, and
refusing to see me as more than trash or something you can dump on.
When I weeded out what love was not, I came up with a list of what I thought love is.
loving myself despite what others think of me,
seeing that I have something to offer to the world like you,
calling me by my name,
lending a helping hand when needed,
tuning in to how I am feeling,
permitting me freedom of expression,
honoring body as a vehicle for my divine message,
realizing your pain and seeking help,
wanting everyone to be free,
creating a generational cycle of love,
assessing and stopping generational patterns that are hurting others,
listening to me,
desiring to be cleansed of anger, fear, judgement, and anything in opposition of you respecting me,
striving to understand instead of taking things personally,
seeking the Truth about life and my role in it,
forgiving me when I don’t live up to your standards,
accepting me where I am with their life, and others life-edifying, promoting, and sustaining actions.
Because I know what love is not, I aim to show the next generation what love is. I do not want to continue anything that hurt me and continue all that helped me to believe that my life and voice matter.
You have the opportunity to create a generational cycle of love by:
- Reassessing your definition of love and make the necessary changes.
- Healing from the inside out. Addressing anger, frustrations, disappointments, expectations, guilt, shame, resentment, and other potentially life-draining emotions and feelings. Make time to regularly check in with yourself and safely express your emotions and feelings. You are worthy of being here because your birth justified your existence.
- Treating others how you want to be treated. You accept others where they are. And at the same time, you also show them how I expect to be treated. Your pain is your pain. You can help but refuse to be a dumping ground.
- Aiming to understand instead of judge. Everyone is on a journey. We are all trying to figure out how to move through life and experiences.
- Congratulating, praising, and supporting others through their journey. Deep inside, we are all still little children who occasionally need to hear a positive word or need a helping hand.
The generational cycle of pain did not occur overnight. But, we have in our power to create the legacy we want.
Make this lifetime great! You have the ability, gifts, talents, and experiences to create a generational cycle of love from the inside out.
MSN BSN RN, Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, ACE Fitness Instructor, CDCES
P.S. I would love for you to join my community of being bent on using our experiences as stepping stones to our divine purpose, healing from the inside out, and achieving and sustaining optimal health. Join below.