The love I have for me has to be greater than the love I have for anyone else. It feels absurd to say that. The concept seems almost harsh. The statement usually goes, I love my kids more than anything in this world. I get that, I agree with that, I even feel that. When I say I have to love me, what I am trying to convey is truly accept any flaws and believe in my own capabilities. I have to love all of me. In honesty, if I don’t love me and push toward my needs I won’t love anyone else as completely as I could. There would be a missing piece or a lost part that could have been greater.
I don’t want what I am saying to be misconstrued. I feel like the luckiest woman alive. My kids are my everything, I love them more than life itself, they give me purpose. My husband is my complete heart and has been my biggest inspiration. I’d do absolutely anything for my family. However, I’ve made mistakes. I thought the way to show them my love was pushing all my needs to the side and attempt to be super mom/ wife. I thought if I wanted just for me, it was selfish. I am a mom, I am a wife, but I am also me. An individual with their own separate needs and yes wants.
The result of me not making myself a priority was I felt lonely and sad. I started to feel turmoil and it was hard for me to process why. I lost any sense of individuality. I consumed myself in my marriage and raising our kids. I didn’t allow myself to think of doing anything else because I put all my value as a person into my family. I wanted my family to love me so much because I didn’t. I couldn’t see my value without them.
It was not fair to give them that responsibility. That’s a lot of weight for anyone to bare. I rationalized that in order to be an amazing mom and spouse I couldn’t focus on anything but my family, if I did it would be self-serving. I don’t say I have to love myself more than anyone else as a reason to push others away, it’s so I can love others fully. If I love me completely then nothing can stand in my way of loving my family with every ounce. I wouldn’t depend on them for my worth because I love me, and I know my worth.
That’s my point, nobody can tell you your value. You have to instill that in yourself. Your family can love you to the ends of the earth but you have to feel that within. I made the change, I decided I had to show my kids and husband a better version of me. One that is consumed in loving them because I love me.
So, with the support of my family, I began to take the steps to finding the value within myself. Not from my kids good grades, having a clean house, or my husbands promotion but from me. Just me. I knew I needed personal growth and had to find answers I didn’t have. I opened my mind, read books, and did online research. The most fabulous thing started to happen, I began to discover what made me tick. I reeled myself in and focused on what makes me, me.
My first step was finding something I loved. I needed discover a passion and pursue it fully. Not just half-assing it but going full force. It had to be self-focused. Although it felt selfish it nourished my heart and fed my soul. By filling a void I didn’t know I had I became happier and more accepting of myself.
The biggest step was probably when I stopped socializing with the people that made me feel judged. How can anyone improve themselves surrounded by people that don’t make them feel good about who they are? Whenever I was around those individuals I’d find myself questioning so much about who I was. It’s as though I’d be pulled into a vortex of negativity and I’d be in a funk for days, possibly weeks!
I decided I was worth it and deserved to see myself the way my husband and kids did. I took a step back from the negativity and the process became so much easier. On that note, you can’t stop either, once you start you have to keep going, even when it’s hard or you don’t like what you feel. That’s when the transformation is happening. You have to accept you are on a journey with no deadline.
I knew I had to work on loving all my quarks and find what I really loved about me. Progress is progress no matter how slow or small of a step. You may have setbacks but it’s all growth. You’re pushing for more from yourself and that’s amazing.
The fact that you took the time to read this shows you care about yourself. You took a moment and decided this resonates with me. Maybe you are scared to push through a barrier, or reach for more, but if you love you without conditions any of those obstacles become lessons you can learn from. I started taking these steps because I was not giving myself what I deserved.
I thought my family was happy with me pushing my needs to the side. The realization is they wanted me to thrive as much as I wanted them to. In order to be the best parent, spouse, sibling, friend, etc you have to have a greater love for yourself. You attract so much more positivity and will be fulfilled when you ensure your own happiness. I love me, you should love you.
Life is a crazy wonderful journey. Keep Going!