My boy got in trouble at school the other day. As disappointed as I was, I couldn’t help but be filled with pride at the same time. Although he did something wrong, his teacher kept repeating how he has such a good heart and means well, how he is so loving, how he is such a sweet and caring boy, how he just wants everyone to be happy and how she is so proud of how he is always honest even if it means he will be in trouble.
He is only 6 years old and his struggle is sitting still for long periods of time. His body takes over during any type of break and he just lets loose. He struggles with controlling that. What he doesn’t struggle with yet is his unconditional love, his huge loving heart.
Before reprimanding him, I asked for a hug. I told him that he will be getting talked to about what he did wrong, but first I wanted to let him know how proud I was of what he is doing right. I told him that two of the most important things in life are always being honest, even when it is hard, and to never lose his loving heart. I explained that the world will try him more and more, and it will get even harder to maintain those two things the older he gets.
We talk about how the ways of the world are not necessarily the right ways, how people will try to get him to do bad things, and how important it is to tell the truth. This boy, he loves with his whole heart. There is no in between for him. It is either go big or go home. This characteristic, he gets from me. It makes me proud, but scares me to death all at the same time.
You see, having such a big heart means that you will easily get hurt and let down. It means that you expect others to love and care the way you do and tough to wrap your mind around when they don’t.
The hardest part of having a heart that goes all in for everyone is the betrayal that is guaranteed to happen throughout life. The harsh reality is that you will have friends with a mask. These friends may seem to be very good friends for years, then one day they will do something that hurts so bad that your heart literally aches from the pain. They will betray your trust, your loyalty. It may be that you find out they say hurtful things behind your back, they may turn on you for no reason, they may just disappear from your life and you become awkward strangers in passing. You will wonder in that passing if they miss you at all the way you miss them.
Another problem with a soft heart is that you never really get over losing a “friend” no matter how much you say you do. Beware! These people can also come disguised as family, which is even harder to understand, making it even that much more hurtful.
The constant struggle in your head is trying to understand what you could have possibly done to deserve such betrayal and treatment. The struggle is that you will mentally beat yourself up trying to understand why you are unlovable to these very people to which you gave you heart.
A good-hearted person is ultimately a server. It is important to be liked, to be loved. We serve others to show our love and share our passions. Sometimes, that may just mean emotionally investing in someone to be there for them.
It is so hard to be a big-hearted person in such a cruel world. You will constantly think about how horrible people are and how much more you love your dog. You eventually can’t help going right back into loving people to an extreme again until you are hurt once more, then the cycle starts all over. What a vicious cycle it is. Being an honest person plays into this cycle perfectly as well. People will either love you or hate you for your honesty.
I think of all of the heartache that my poor boy is in for. Then, I think about all of the love he will experience despite it, and that outweighs all the hurt. It is so easy to let your heart become hard in a cold and cruel world. I pray he stays loving despite it all. I pray he helps bring light to the darkness. The hurt teaches and helps you grow, even if you never do understand the why.
To my sweet boy, your excessive energy that gets you into trouble now will eventually settle. Never let that heart of yours grow cold and hard, no matter how many snakes in the grass you come across. It isn’t worth your soul and you have a beautifully amazing soul, baby boy.