Relationships After Birth

“Be the change you want to see in the world” – Ghandi

I have always loved this quote, and been amazed at the apparent magic of it.

Relationships after birth experience a big shake up, like playing a game of chess, but the rules have been changed.

People change. People you have known a long time can start to feel different or even irritating. You may even feel closer to others, where there is a shared understanding. Either way, there is change, and it is time to develop new skills, new levels of communication and a new capacity to love. This is, of course, if you answer the calling.

One of my greatest callings came on a beach after Christmas. My husband and I were walking together on holidays after another ridiculously chaotic and action filled year. We were both really tired. He had retreated into his man cave, and I was feeling alone and unloved. The words between us were sporadic, monosyllabic and without emotion. We were going through the motions. My usual and only inclination during these times were to retreat into my own cave, until we both were ready to come out.

This year I had a new thought. “This isn’t working, what if I did the opposite?”. In that moment I decided, rather than retreat, what if I came out with more love and more attention than ever before. Now I will admit, this new thought wasn’t an easy one to digest. It probably came with other thoughts like, ‘why do I always have to be the one? This isn’t fair. I have to do everything.’ Familiar little thoughts that kept me feeling superior. However, against my familiar program – I decided to love him more, not less, when he was like this. I think this is known as loving more unconditionally – heard of that? Yes, we all have.

So what does that really mean?

For me, it looked like this. Touching his back and saying the words; “I’m here for you” (even though I didn’t feel like he deserved it). Giving him space and continuing to be engaged and there for him and the boys (even though I was really tired). Turn the volume down on the negative self-talk (even though this really didn’t seem fair). Find my own joy in the little moments, like watching the boys play on the beach (even though I wanted some alone time). Kiss my husband good morning and goodnight (even when he didn’t deserve it). I pushed beyond my own resistance and into the world of loving unconditionally.

A life changing decision for us both.

What happened? Are you curious?

He came out of his man cave quicker than ever before.

He felt safe to share what was really going on for him, which caused me to get a much bigger picture of what he was experiencing.

He started to show me more love, which is what I needed from him.

He took the boys off to give me some time out, without me needing to do a dramatic performance of how tired I was.

I was then also able to share my own struggles with him, which helped him to understand me more.

AND would you believe, I really started to feel more love for him. Just like magic. It was incredible. It changed everything!

When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. –   Wayne Dyer

Now I really understood more about the nature of unconditional love and my capacity to love, even during the hard times. Do you think this story stops there? Not at all!

Unconditional love is like a contagious disease, one touch and wham! He experienced it more for me. We experienced it more for the kids. Who knows how far-reaching this decision was. What I do know is this – I am more in love with my man than ever – and he became the man I needed him to be, without any nagging 😊 If he could pack a dishwasher, he would be bloody perfect!

I hope our little story inspires you to tread that path and discover your own capacity to love.

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