I have two loves in my life. I found them at different phases in my life. The first is called Mr Pampering Love. The second is called Mr Tough love. Let me tell you a little more about them – and the journey, the realizations, thus far.
Mr Pampering Love, as the name suggests – makes me feel so incredibly great. He treats me like a princess. If he had it his way, he wouldn’t allow my feet to touch the ground at all… he would just keep throwing rose petals my way and ensure I walk amidst a bed of roses. He compliments me on everything – from the curls on my head, to the little innocuous little toenail upon my feet. He gives me a foot massage when I am tired, and whispers sweet nothings to me… oh, how I love Mr Pampering Love. Being with him is like being beside a huge fireplace on a cold wintry night.
Mr Tough Love entered my life a little later. If I am true to myself, I didn’t like him at all initially. He seemed more like a teacher than love in the first place. He would give me a lot of advice. He would correct me. He would guide me. Sometimes, he would also scold me. However, when I did all that he said – and got the results he needed, he would be happier than I would have ever seen him. Moreover, he brought out the best in me. With him, I started growing in my own eyes – he made me understand my potential like no one else ever had. Being with him was like being with a mirror – he constantly reflected me to me.
I started distancing myself from Mr Pampering Love and investing more time with Mr Tough Love. I mean here was someone who was helping me produce results like never before… why wouldn’t I want to be with him, more – so much more? I was growing in the eyes of the world. I was getting created. Ah, this was awesome.
However, as time went by, I started missing Mr Pampering Love. Those little messages of love – when he would ask me if I had eaten or reached home? That gentle touch. The caress. That feeling of absolute comfort in his presence. I was missing it terribly. I told Mr Tough Love I needed a break and went running into the ever-loving arms of Mr Pampering Love. Ah, wonderful that he was – he didn’t once question me. He just began to pamper me like always. I needed it. My hard-work bruised hands and feet delighted in his wonderful presence.
As time passed by, once again I started feeling incomplete – I was being pampered like a queen – but as always, my performance had taken a hit. Mr Pampering Love didn’t play the mirror to me. He never corrected me. He didn’t push either. He just accepted and loved me as I was. He cherished and celebrated me, as I was. I began to yearn to see Mr Tough Love… grow, like I had never grown before.
That is when I realized, I needed both Mr Pampering Love and Mr Tough Love. Both played their own very unique roles in my life. One created, the other comforted. One mirrored, the other mothered. A balance of This & That is what made life more beautiful and meaningful than ever before. I needed them both, at times one after the other, other times simultaneously – and in their presence I could flourish, while being nourished.
Such a simple Truth. And fact of life.
If only we could get this balance right in our marriage, in our parenting, in our professional lives – how much of a wonder we would be able to create.
I am constantly striving to be the right amount of Ms Pampering Love and Ms Tough love to all the key relationships of my life. Of course, I get mixed and don’t always get the balance right – but the very journey of love has become so much more exciting because of this simple, but profound, realization!
So, what are you giving, and receiving today?
Pampering love or tough love?
Hey, how about a bit of both?