“Keep love in your heart. A life without it is like a sunless garden when the flowers are dead.” – Oscar Wilde

Love in a mother's words

When I was in high school, love was something I needed to find and to gain, even with friendships. Teenage love tends to be dramatic; it is exciting and romantic like the Taiwan drama series, “Meteor Garden”, where the leading actor fights for the love of the leading actress. However, when we don’t feel all excited for that special one anymore, we think love isn’t present anymore and it would be time to hop on to the next love.

When I was in University, love was something I needed to find; a person to love me for who I am even at my ugliest. I try to find my identity in the midst of the relationships I was in, but sometimes I found myself becoming someone else’s image, dreams or identity and ended up almost losing mine.

Love became something more endearing and accepting when I came to know the Lord in 2004. Love isn’t something I needed to fight for, to strive for, but something that is freely given even when I didn’t deemed to earn it. The Love I’ve learnt is patient, kind and not self-seeking, something extended in grace and in faith.

After I got married in 2008, love is something I needed to protect. To keep my marriage sane and healthy, to ensure that my husband and I are constantly communicating and nourishing our marriage with time and efforts and not taking each other for granted.

Just when I thought I knew everything, Love became a totally new concept in 2011 when I became a mom. Love is seeing how my firstborn, Samuel, enjoy laughter and acknowledgement from us, hearing him squeal with joy when we play hide and seek with him, and savouring his smiles when he is filled with his milk at the end of the day. Love is having the acceptance of who you are and being contented with what you have.

Yvonne and her son

By Yvonne Chee

TNAP editor Michelle Ang asks six parents what love means to them.

What is love to you?

Love is… freely given from the giver; it cannot be earned, is not justified based on one’s circumstance, neither does it require one to qualify for it.
Som Yew Ya, writer

Love is… giving more than receiving unconditionally.
Esther Lim, CEO & Founder of LEAP Schoolhouse

Love is… saying no to my ipad games when my wife asks me for help to feed my child.
Johnson Chee, father of one

Love is… holding me close and letting me cry in your arms, even those time when I push you away.
Dorothea Chow, writer

Love is… letting go of your ego and giving unconditionally with a big heart.
Elaine Lau, Marketing Manager

Love is… not being angry and yet waking up in the middle of the night to change your baby’s diapers and feeding baby with milk even when your husband is asleep.
Yvonne Chee, writer

What is love to you? We would love to hear from you. Feel free to leave your comments below!

This article was first published in The New Age Parents e-magazine