This afternoon, we have a post from my friend, Kaylee. I remember meeting Kaylee at Clark's mission homecoming (Clark is Holly's twin) and thinking she was so sweet. A few weekends after that, I came to know her better when we all sat at Holly's house after a fireside and talked for a long time. She has always been so nice to everyone she meets; that's just how she is! I have loved getting to know her over the past few years as she became Holly's sister-in-law and through reading her blog. She is one of the most beautiful brides I have ever seen and she is a beautiful person on the inside and outside. Thanks for taking the time to post, Kaylee. Make sure you go visit her blog and enjoy this post with some great advice!
I have been trying to think about something interesting for the past two weeks that I could write about on here. Most of you do not know me so I don’t really think you’d be interested in my life with my husband. Most of the people who have already written on here have said a lot about what love means to them so I don’t really feel as though I can add or touch on more than what you all have already. However, I do feel as though I can add my perspective on love and how I think we could all be better at expressing, appreciating, and receiving love.
Background: I learned at a really young age that love is not perfect and does not always last. My parents got divorced when I was 7 and not only did my parents split up but they split my siblings and me up as well. Three stayed in Utah with my dad while my younger sister and I moved half way across the country with my mother to Iowa. From my parents’ divorce came a lot of ugly behavior and selfishness between my parents and I saw firsthand the heartbreak that comes from not understanding and not loving people in the way that they need.
Because I never wanted to have anyone feel the way I felt from my parent’s misunderstandings, I became obsessed with wanting to feel love and understand what love was. Through my search of trying to understand love and more importantly, give it most effectively to those around me, I have come across two things that I think apply to pretty much anyone who is interested in strengthening their love for those around them.
The first was a lecture I had the privilege of attending from a marriage and family therapist at Brigham Young University. He said there are three components to making a marriage work (which I personally think can be applied to ANY loving relationship). I am just going to describe the one that I think relates most to love which is forgiveness. What I have learned from love is that it is not perfect and there has to be forgiveness in order for relationships to heal and for that love to be strengthened. People you love are going to mess up and they are going to hurt you. Think your spouse is going to understand you perfectly and that you will never fight because he is just the sweetest person in the whole wide world? Nope. Things are going to come up. You are going to get hurt from your spouse at some point and you will hurt them as well… that is a part of being human. The important part is if you are willing to forgive them as well as ask for forgiveness yourself. I seriously thought my husband was THE PERFECT MAN when I met him and that our life would be a fairy tale together because he was so nice. Though he is amazing, he is still a human being. We still do not know each other perfectly and we were not raised in the same way which has resulted in there being a lot of room in our relationship to work on forgiveness. If you took the step to get married and made that commitment, forgive. Do it for your sake. Do it for your spouse’s sake. Do it for your family’s sake. Maybe you really are right and they are wrong… so what. I can promise it feels so much better to just let go and forgive than sitting through the pain of holding a grudge until you make yourself miserable.
The second thing I have found very helpful in giving and receiving love is the book “The Five Love Languages” by Gary Chapman. Chapman categorizes 5 different ways people might feel and express love. I am not going to go into them on here but you can look it up and even take the quiz online yourself to see which you fit in to! Anyway, this really opened my eyes to understanding that not everyone wants or needs the same things I need in regards to love. And the way I share my love may not mean anything to someone else due to them just having a different love language than me. I really learned from this that you cannot be selfish when loving and really need to take the time to understand how the person you have a relationship with needs love. With that, not everyone has read this book nor wants to, so it has been good for me to understand that they could be trying their very hardest to share their love with me even though it may not be in the way I best feel it. It really is important to take the time to recognize their effort and how they show love so you can appreciate and see that they honestly do care about you.