I’ve always had dates with myself. I go to the movies by myself, to restaurants. I’ve always thought that was self-love.
But I was wrong. It wasn’t the act that was wrong but the intention and the feeling behind it.
Inside me, I felt entitled, stressed, that going out and being with myself was more of a distraction from reality than enjoyment. Often times, I would feel guilty and end up even more stressed, angry, resentful.
As I was sitting at the doctor’s office today, it came to me. It struck me like lightning. I have to be my own best friend! My own lover!
I have to fall in love with me and everything else outside of me will just be a bonus.
If someone leaves or if something goes wrong, I would still have my best friend with me and that is myself and I will never feel alone.
There will be no missing piece, no attachment, no fear, no need for outside validation. No expectation from others, only gratitude. There would be no demands from others because there is nothing they can give to me that I cannot or haven’t all ready given myself.
Everything that they can give me will not be demanded or expected because whatever is given to me only adds to what I already do have.
I’ve always thought that one should be selfless and to give more than take. Make people happy in expense of my own happiness.
To give without waiting for anything in return and to give even if i didn’t have enough. To say yes even if I wanted to say no.
I did just that and I was miserable. I’ve always wondered why.
Because you see, how can I give from an empty cup? How can I make someone happy when I myself is miserable? How can I give to someone
in need when I too, is in need? Whether it be money, time or attention.
Loving myself doesn’t mean being selfish. I realized those are two different things. It took me just now to see the difference. And it’s better late than never.
During this time that most believe in yolo and self-love is sometimes mistaken for hey you have to eat anything you want because you only live once, you have to date as many people as you want (and can) because life is too short, or you have to do things that you like even if it’s harmful because you see we are only here for a short while. You have to go to this place or that place even if you cannot afford it and all your credit cards are all maxed out because you know the world has gone berserk and you don’t know if we die tomorrow.
That really isn’t self-love. It isn’t self-love to stuff ourselves with unhealthy food just because we think we deserve it. Not because we can, we must. That isn’t love. It isn’t self-love to live a life we cannot afford and slave ourselves with jobs we hate to pay our debts.
It isn’t self-love to fill our voids with material things we don’t really absolutely love or even need.
Life isn’t short. Life is too damn long to suffer from the consequences of the choices we make.
It’s good to find happiness, wherever we are on our own so we are not constantly trying to please ourselves with things, food or even people or placing unrealistic demands on our loved ones and the world for that matter.
When we do feel complete on our own, what is there to fear?
Everything else only adds to our happiness and we will find more appreciation and gratitude for people, things and experiences.
When we feel good and happy, we see the world differently. Our reality changes, we see people for the true beauty that they are. When we have self-hate and is angry and resentful, even love is mistaken for something ugly and even beautiful people turn into self absorbed monsters. What we feel inside resonates outside. What we are is what we see.
So if we want to change our reality, let’s start from within.
That is the only thing we do have control over anyway, ourselves.
Maybe it seems I’m just blabbing here but you know what, I am actually writing for myself. I don’t even know if anyone out there is actually reading what I write here but this is more for me, more than anybody. It feels good to write about what I learn and realize and to always be reminded when I read them again. I am hoping that I inspire someone out there though or that I ignite a little fire inside someone and make him or her realize some things too.
I am so excited to be good to myself. Now, just with more authenticity and not because I should but because I actually want to and actually, truly enjoy my own company.
I am not a writer.
I am a story teller.
LOS ANGELES-BASED PHOTOGRAPHER