Loving unconditionally isn’t an impossible task. In relationships, we start off loving unconditionally, and have every intention of loving until “death do us part”. In the beginning, it’s easy to love everything about your mate, especially when you have love-endorphins coursing through your body. You want to do anything to please each other. But once the love endorphins simmer down, which is usually at the two-year mark and then life happens, you get busy, you get distracted, and distance starts to build. The “until death do us part” starts to feel far off.
Love is no longer measured by the number of butterflies in our stomach at the expectation of seeing the other, but instead, it is measured by the number of expectations and demands that are fulfilled. Did they take out the trash as you asked? If the answer is yes, then you feel loved. If it is no, then you might feel that your significant other doesn’t care enough to help you out.
Close your eyes and remember how you felt making your significant other delight at a sweet gesture like leaving a note in their briefcase or purse or surprising them with their favorite treat you picked up at the store. You thought of them and took the time to let them know it.
There is no doubt that you still love your mate even when you are frustrated that they leave the counter messy with all of their hair products or have dirty socks that never seem to hit the hamper. They know you still love them, it just gets harder for them to recognize or recall that love through the glare or frown as you pick up the socks or sweep the items off the counter into an open drawer. It might be oversimplifying, but not having the expectation that your mate has the same pet peeve of a spotless floor or counter as you do reduces the irritation when you see the socks next to the hamper or the pile of hair products on the counter.
I read a short story recently where a woman would always nag at her husband for leaving his clothes in a trail on the way to bed. It was a real sore spot with her until he passed and then she missed that trail of clothes. Think about the little things that drive you crazy. Is it really worth the frustration? Would you do anything to have those habits back if your mate was no longer with you?