Love is a very emotionally active process; you can’t love a person the same way you appreciate art from a distance. Not really anyway. True love requires involvement and engagement, even if you aren’t physically present or taking an active role in the other person’s projects. You need to feel their concerns are your own to an extent. A father can love his daughter, and be fully invested in her career aspirations, without telling her what to do, supporting her materially, or living vicariously through her. Sometimes those things are warranted, but sometimes they are not.
Learning the difference has been challenging for me. When I see a problem, I just want to fix it. I like helping people, so I’m sure I’m motivated out of kindness, but it’s true that sometimes real kindness is letting the other person handle their own stuff.
One of the problems with being my age is that I forget how inexperienced I am and how much I have to learn about myself and life in general. I sometimes trick myself into thinking I can do anything and everything. I am wrong, but I still persist, sometimes to my detriment and that of others around me. Nowhere is that truth driven home more forcefully than in relationships and the delicate dance that is loving another person.
Loving other people is hard. It requires faith and trust and courage, the belief that you can put your heart in someone’s hands and know that they will keep it safe when you’re not looking. But it also requires that you learn the particular way the other person needs their heart to be handled. You have to respect that everyone’s heart is unique and has unique preferences.
Peace and Blessings