One of the television programs I enjoy watching is The Dog Whisperer. He frequently states, “You don’t get the dog you want, but the dog you need.” This thought lead me to reflect on my own (human!) relationships.
I began thinking about how friends and family show love. If being honest with my feelings, in the past at times, I have become disappointed or frustrated in the way it has been expressed. However, to reflect on Cesar Milan’s statement…I thought–in truth–to get exactly what we want, isn’t allowing the other person to be their authentic self. Asking a “circle-loving style” friend to love you within your “square-loving style” is missing the point of experiencing life with others.
Maybe, if one wants to be loved a specific way—we should love ourselves exactly how we’d like. We can ask ourselves to fall perfectly within our love parameters. We can take the space we need on a quiet morning and tell ourselves the things we wish to hear. “Great job not losing your temper!” “You made a wonderful point during your meeting”….etc. As silly as it may seem, why not tell ourselves what we so need to hear? After all, we internally created the desire to hear this statement, let’s authentically tell ourselves what we know deep down to be true.
When we need to mentally place roles/character traits and expectations on others, we are saying to them, “I don’t trust your true self.” This may be a valid realization with some people in our lives and serious reflection may be in order. But if there is faith and trust, let’s recognize how our expectation and desires are affecting the relationship. If we let others be who they are—what surprising ways they enhance our life! What amazing, unexpected joy one will find in their fresh perspective. To truly love another, let’s be compassionate of their interpretation of the world. And an amazing thing happens…we’re loved not necessarily how we want, but how we need.
Thank you to all my easy and challenging relationships….may we continue to grow side by side with absolute love.