Love, explained (sort of)
Love, explained (sort of)
Parent24 Editor, Scott Dunlop
The shops are fun right now- the ones that don’t have a curious mixture of Easter and Valentine’s Day displays all at once are screaming a confusing message of LOVE. Love is supposedly red and white. Only it’s not- it’s sometimes wonderfully kaleidoscopic, and sometimes as grey and indefinable as the point where a low fog reaches the clouds. Adults have a hard time understanding it, never mind explaining it to their kids.

Love is hard work. Like trying to tunnel through a mountain of granite armed with a spork. Love means that even when you want to BLIP your partner over the head with a newspaper for being so infuriating, you don’t, because... you love them. And when your kids are winding you up, but then they make you laugh helplessly at the drop of a hat- that’s love.

Love is complicated. Not in the Facebook status sense, but in the sense that the more you look for it or try and uncover its source, the more evasive it can become. And yet, when it appears, it’s as simple and OBVIOUS as the first moment you gazed in wonder at your baby’s tiny fingernails.

Love is half a bird- well, to a cat, anyway. To your kids, love is a smooshed biscuit, or a tug on your pyjama sleeve in the middle of your night. An ‘uppie’ when there’s a stranger or a Big Scary Dog around; It’s expressive.

Love is a glass half-full. If you’ve ever been hurt in love, you may feel like this: I hate love, but I love love. It’s almost impossible to suppress- As hard as it is to get over hurt, it’s just so wonderful to give and receive love. Your kids probably don’t expect the worst, right? They’re more likely to have wildly optimistic attitudes about life. That’s what love feels like.

Love is Polyfilla. It fills the cracks caused by life’s failures and challenges. For both parents and kids, those loving hugs can keep the walls from crumbling.
Love hurts: It’s true- It really can hurt to see others in love when you are not, or when your kids proclaim “I hate you!”  Some love-pain leaves scars.

The best thing about Valentine’s Day is that it has nothing to do with love! It may be about affection, sentimentality and flattery, but not about love. So it doesn’t have to affect the way you feel about love in any way at all.

One of the best things you could ever do is to show your kids that love really is much better to give than to receive. Of course, they’d probably prefer the chocolates.

We all experience love differently, but hugging your loved ones is a great way to start.

Tell us about an experience you have had as a parent to that made you sit back and think “wow, I love that child”, and you could win a R250 voucher.

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