An act of love that fails
is just as much a part of the divine life
as an act of love that succeeds,
for love is measured by its own fullness,
not by its reception.
Anyone that has kids can relate to this quote. I know I did. Tough love throughout the formative years may look like "failed love" in the eyes of our children, but is in reality the self-sacrificing of a good parent. I remember a couple of times being on the receiving end of tirades about bitterness and unhappiness when the reception of my love was not well received by a teenage daughter hell-bent on what looked to me like potential personal destruction.
Well, the daughter is thankfully still with us and next week will be graduating from law school. We'll be adding the third graduation picture to the two shown here. Sitting over tea recently in front of the fireplace, I told her that we raised each other during those years when I was a single Mom and she was the teenage daughter. She laughed and said if I only knew. I decided to leave that one alone.
Yes, we've been through a lot together. What I know now is that she was loving me to the fullest during those years as well, through the veil of adolescent hormones and a developing brain. Now as adults we can meet on the same plane of reciprocal love. Bet it's the same with your adult kids. What a nice reward for those years when tough love looked like the only kind available.
Of Note: The top photo shows Susanne and I the day she graduated from college in 2003, the bottom from high school in 1999. Because of the coming graduation festivities, I will be taking two weeks off from this blog and will return mid-May. Hopefully by then, spring will have arrived in the northwoods!