I love myself.
Often times we hear these word, but do we really understand what it means to love ourselves?
For the longest time, I have been in relationships, one after another – the longest I would say was with my ex-husband. After our separation, emotionally I was just stagnant and lost, I did not know what it meant to be a single mother or how to even operate as one.
Had no one to model from, no one that crossed my mind at that time. My parents are still married until today, naturally no one in the right mind would ever want to get married to end up going thru a painful heart-breaking divorce.
For the first few weeks, I went on dating apps to keep myself distracted, it was working at first having conversations with random guys, but later on it felt meaningless and empty until one moment I was just starring at my oldest boy, my heart ached again. I have been so consumed with my own thoughts, emotions and grief that I was ignorant to the fact that my 2 year old ( at that time) needed me most. His father has left us and cut us off.
For a few days I sat and reflected, I didn’t really share much to anyone bout what I went thru or how I felt, because I knew they would not understand and instead of listening they would feel obligated to react to say something to make me feel better that would actually just made how I felt worst, so I chose to be silent and just do.
I promised myself that I would put my kids first above all else, their mental, emotional, and physical stability. I decided to put love aside and focus on myself healing, I asked myself this question: how can I expect someone to love me, but I don’t love myself? I started going for therapy again and eventually 6 months later went on the meds to help myself cope through my depression and anxiety. It was not easy, sometimes I think and feel that I got the hang of it and I was moving 2 steps ahead only to realize later I took 10 steps back. If anyone every suggest self-love is easy, I don’t think they themselves understand what it truly means. It is easier said than done.
4 years I have lived the single life until this moment, and funny enough it was only recently I understood what I need to do to be where I need to be emotionally and mentally. The first 2 years of my self-healing journey to self-love was figuring out what I want (not based on others, but truly what do I really want) by journaling it down, it is an ever growing list as time progresses, but I do know for certain what I do not want and that is non-negotiable – perhaps in the next story I would share a little about what I want and do not want. Coming to the third year, I had some sense of direction – again this was all trial and error – when it comes to self-healing there is no “one” method, there are different types of method and I needed to figure out what suits me best, till 2022 when I finally settled in to the method that suited me. I would not be where I am today if it was not for Dr Lucas and the community he has build where everyone from different background, different stories and pain come together at the centre for one reason, which is to heal, grow and love ourselves and others.
Anyways, my healing journey started on my birthday in March and it finished in October 2022. It was for sure a roller coaster ride, learning to ground myself, meditation, sound healing and other methods combined. I found peace, and each awakening phase, my awareness heightens, and I start to gain acceptance with my trauma and past. Ironically, all these while I thought my healing journey and self-love began after my separation.
Little did I know, I was wrong. Sure some people choose to channel all their pain through the exterior self, working out, losing weight, beauty , picking up a new hobby, meeting new circles etc, but what I realized, I won’t be able to heal if I do not sit and face my own emotions, by welcoming the pain and accepting it. What I did was running and avoiding to a point I became emotionally numb. As Dr Lucas said, my pain has made me more masculine. I have been good at compartmentalizing that I didn’t realize that I have become cold especially towards my children – all this while my end game was survival, focusing on being a caretaker than a mother. I was content with the thought that as long as I have income to pay bills and feed my kids, it is enough. Single parents, does this thought sound familiar to you? I am here to tell you that it is okay, it is not wrong, we are doing the best we can with the cards that has been handed to us.
After realizing this, I knew I needed to do something, until I found a method that worked for me. It took Dr Lucas 3 to 5 times to break me down emotionally until I could not break down anymore. From screaming in the mountains of Cameron to internally fighting to keep the pain. Throughout my healing process, towards the end, I realized I was holding back – and during my self-realization, I realized that I was afraid of letting go my pain, because I did not know who I am without the pain. The fear of emptiness scares me, it is only until a few days ago (after tears and anxiety), I started to accept the emptiness and loneliness. Acceptance is always key to peace – this is what I have learned. I can’t change my experience and trauma, but what I can do is grow and do better moving forward. Easier said than done, right?
This is what I have come to terms with and understand in my own way what loving myself truly means. It means that you 100% without any doubt or feeling any guilt bout other people’s opinions surrender to God, the Universe or whatever that you believe in. Be kind to yourself, love yourself by taking care of yourself with water, proper nutrition, sleep, meditate- see all these answers are cliché but it is the truth. There is a deeper meaning to self-love and it takes a lot of courage to dig deep, face our inner fears, going against the little voice in our heads that constantly puts us down in order to be the best version ourselves. No one is perfect, I have my relapsed days, but most importantly is not quitting. My anchor is me and my sons. I can finally say that I deserve better, I deserve to be happy and I deserve to be loved and respected – yet all that comes from myself first.
People will treat you based on how you treat others – is that not the saying? I say and rephrase, people will treat you based on how you treat yourself. Like attracts like, those who comes to us are a mirror of us in some way.
Maybe in time I will share more of my story, for now this is how I found self-love and learning to fall in love with myself after 4 years of learning and searching.
Till next time,