Editor’s Note: Song lyrics denoted in bold italics.
Maybe it’s because I *just* wrote an essay on Beauty and the Beast (coming soon!), but I’ve been thinking about a certain topic a lot lately: Unconditional love. You all know just how much I love to sing its praises! And lately, there’s one song in particular that I’ve been known to sing out loud — at the top of my lungs, of course! I mean, those most powerful songs usually have that kind of effect on me, so…
Katy Perry’s “Unconditionally”
What I’ve always loved and admired about Katy Perry is that she’s been able to cut through all the superficial stuff and get to the heart of things in her song lyrics. She sings about things we’re all feeling, whether that’s hot and cold boyfriends or roaring loudly and showing your might. If you’re feeling something and having major emotions, then there’s probably a Katy song that will match it.
Oh no, did I get too close oh?
Oh, did I almost see what’s really on the inside?
All your insecurities
All the dirty laundry
Never made me blink one time
We’re often so scared to let people get close to us. Maybe part of it is that we’re afraid to show people our true selves — as if they’ll discover some sort of fatal flaw or find something they don’t like and be repulsed by us. At least, that’s how it’s always felt for me. It’s like we have to present this picture-perfect version of ourselves or risk a heartbreaking rejection. So we begin to craft this facade for ourselves and more often than not, it fails to capture all the beautiful parts that make up who we are. Instead, it waters our sense of self and individuality down to a few false traits — you know, the things we “think” people want us to be. Or, the things that we think will get us accepted by everyone around us. It may be misguided, but we’re so sure it’s the elusive ticket that will get us “in” — whatever that may mean.
I will love you unconditionally
There is no fear now
Let go and just be free
I will love you unconditionally
And then, just like that, something begins to change. All it takes is that one person to “see you” and not be the least bit afraid. It could be a family member, friend or just an acquaintance, but the moment is powerful. It totally re-aligns your thinking and belief in yourself. This person wants to know all of you — the good, the flawed and even the quirky! They’re not recoiling in fear, but rather celebrating everything about YOU.
Come just as you are to me
Don’t need apologies
Know that you are all worthy
I’ll take your bad days with your good
Walk through this storm I would
I’d do it all because I love you, I love you
It really is a beautiful thing, isn’t it? That sense that you don’t have to try to be someone else any longer. You don’t have to carry that weight on your shoulders anymore. You can finally just let it all go and be content.
I know that I’ve still got a long way to go on this journey, but I’m feeling more and more comfortable with myself every day. I know that is in no small part due to the people I surround myself with. They’re some of the most wonderful people I could ever ask for in my life. They love and accept me for who I am. They don’t expect me to be any false version of myself. And I don’t expect anything less from them — I love them, flaws, quirks and all. Isn’t that something to be cherished and celebrated, friends? xoxo