This past week I was listening to a Youtube talk by Osho (a deep thinking philosopher).
During the talk, Osho shared something that immediately stirred up a rush of emotions.
Parents are told to sacrifice for their children. That sacrifice then creates deep down resentment inside of the parents and within the children for having to then listen to how parents have sacrificed for them.
I thought immediately of my Dad and how he needed to hear this.
My Dad and I often talk about life, self growth, and the pursuit of happiness, so I picked up the phone and called him.
After I shared this profound message, his first response was “well that’s not all true”.
I felt myself getting angry because he did not agree with Osho’s statement – one that I had resonated with so deeply – and one that I felt explained experiences with my parents.
My Dad said that for him, raising children came from a place of pure love and it was only when things didn’t go as expected that it felt like a sacrifice.
I was getting angrier and I wasn’t sure why, and I said,
“Dad do you know how many times you have said to me that you came to this country with very little and you have done all of this for me and my brother?”
He said yes, and feeling even more emotional – I asked if he realized how how much pressure this put on us.
“It makes us feel like we owe you everything in our lives,” I nearly shouted.
“That’s not how I meant it,” he calmly responded.
I barely allowed him to finish his sentence and said “I know! But do you get that it doesn’t feel good?”
I was definitely not listening and resisting everything he was saying.
He said, “Kavita yes I do understand what you are saying and I even agree to a degree with Osho. When you have a child there is so much love and you want to do so much for your child out of love, and yes sometimes this love causes you to “sacrifice” some things – but sacrifice isn’t the main feeling. The main feeling is love.”
His words hit me hard.
When I hung up the phone. I was feeling so much.
Tears started streaming down my face.
I threw my head into my hands and cried.
I FELT in that moment how much my Dad loved me.
I mean I logically already knew it, but this conversation and realization of his love hit me at a level I hadn’t hit before.
You see – I believed that in order to be truly loved by my Dad I had to be the perfect daughter who was worth the sacrifice that I thought he felt he made for me.
That idea was creating a barrier to me actually FEELING all the love my parents have for me without any strings attached.
Upon reflection, I realized that the entire conversation with my Dad was me trying to prove to him how much he hurt me and how much he did things wrong.
At the time – in the emotional state I was in – I thought getting him to “admit” to this would make me feel better and validate my own need to be the perfect daughter in some way.
But what happened instead was I allowed my Dad’s truth to come through. And when I allowed myself to feel my Dad’s love on a whole new level – the belief that I needed to be perfect to be loved dissolved.
I felt free.
No strings attached.
Realizing this has me feeling happy and more at peace with myself.
It was a hard but priceless conversation.
Your Lovework this week is to ask yourself if you can FEEL the love of your parents or if you feel you have to show up in a certain way in order to receive their love.
Please share your thoughts and feelings in the comments section below.