It’s not unusual ever day when my wife and I wake up and for one of us to say, “I love you,” first thing in the morning. As a matter of fact, it’s most unusual if neither of us does. However, earlier this week I changed it up a bit. Not because I was trying to. It was just that another phrase came more naturally that morning. I said to her, “I adore you.”
Her response surprised me a bit. When I tell her I love her in the morning, she always smiles and says, “I love you. Normally without any hesitation. If she beats me to the punch, my natural response is usually something like, ‘I love you too baby.” Changing the phrasing provided an interesting response. I can’t remember the exact wording, but it was something akin to, “I’m glad to know that though I often don’t see what you find adorable.”
Her response gave me pause. I felt the pain at what must be a hurtful feeling regarding how she saw herself, (though I can certainly empathize with doubtful feelings of self value.) Not to mention how that affected how she viewed my sentiments towards her.
I asked her to elaborate. And she went on to give me the reasons that she didn’t see herself as adorable. I used this opportunity to share the details of what I felt within when I expressed those words.
I said something like:
“You are adorable because you are. And adoring you has nothing to do with only appreciating everything that is so called right or good about you. Our lives are a journey. Each of us has virtues, gifts, talents, and yes even baggage and faults. Navigating through baggage and faults are a part of our journey. I have never expected you to be perfect. But I do love you in your weaknesses while recognizing your strengths and celebrate your growth in a number of areas. When I say, ‘I love you’, or that ‘I adore you’, that means I love and adore all of you. Not just that which has been refined. Think of it this way: We love and adore our daughters, and yet we can quickly name several areas where growth and development is needed. Love and adoration doesn’t wait for perfection. Instead, they team to nurture, protect and make better what has already been created perfect; A child of God, more valuable than anything the world has ever or will ever see.”
I didn’t say these words to her as if I were to teach her something. I was also talking to myself. Oh how great a thing it is, to adore, and be adored, just the way we are.
I hope we both learn the lesson~