Wednesday, August 26, 2009

I Love You

Today, I want to focus on not waiting to demonstrate your feelings, love, encouragement to others, especially family.   You never know what may happen and when, so appreciate what you have while you have it.  
I think just about everyone at one point or another has had a moment or two where they have been upset with a relative or parent.  How long do you hold on to that?  It does neither you nor the other person any good.  In the long run, the relationship will suffer if you don't let go. Forgiveness is so important, both spiritually, emotionally, and physically.
My father has been in the hospital for about 6 weeks now and it was touch and go for quite some time.  He is doing relatively better than he was after his surgery but it has challenged his independence.  He basically has to learn everything from to dress, undress, bathe, walk.  It is amazing what we take for granted.  A few weeks ago I didn't know, neither did he or the rest of the family, whether he was going to make it.  He was so extremely fragile.  He still is, but I see improvement.  Everyday, he is getting stronger.
Well, on one of those days when I thought he wasn't going to make it, all my disappointment, frustrations, and anger went away.  That was no longer important.  My father was important.  It didn't matter what mistakes he had made in his life; I loved him just the same and I was going to be by his bedside for anything he needed.  I did this day in and day out until I could do it no longer as it was affecting my health.
On my next visit, dad realized that I loved him so much and would be a caregiver with no squeemishity (is that a word? well it is now).  We both cried as he told me he loved me and that he was sorry for everything.  He now knew how much I loved him and the patience and tolerance I had was never-ending for him.
We often demonstrate our love in our own ways, but sometimes we need to demonstrate it in the way the other person needs to receive it.  A verbal I Love You always is nice to hear but sometimes even better to say.
Show some appreciation to a family member today.  Start a new tradition.  Say I Love You to a family member, parent, spouse everyday and mean it.  You won't have regrets later in life.