In an attempt to love myself I have started doing things such as giving myself a daily foot massage before bed.
I have to tell you that for me giving myself a foot massage is akin to tickling myself – it simply is an entirely different experience from when you have someone else doing it.
But I massage my own feet because I desire to have them massaged and I have decided not to wait for someone to come along to do it for me.
And as I was giving myself a foot massage and looking at my feet I saw where skin discoloration had taken place on the top of both of my big toes.
And as I was looking at my feet I thought to myself here I am loving and caring for my feet and yet they are flawed.
I mean I was massaging them, soaking them, removing dry skin, moisturizing them and even placing them on a pillow so they could rest.
And yet they were flawed.
It was as I gazed at my flawed feet that I had an epiphany.
I need to love all of me in the same manner that I was loving on my feet.
For I love my feet even though there is now a discoloration on the top of my big toes.
And I wasn’t waiting for someone to come along and care for my feet.
One of my guilty pleasures despite others finding it peculiar is walking outside barefoot so that I can feel the earth between my toes.
I love to walk in rain puddles barefoot and yes I have even walked barefoot on snow and ice.
I can’t explain it, I just love to walk barefoot while out in my yard whenever possible.
For me allowing my foot to experience the sensation of earth against flesh does something for me that I don’t think there is a word that I can use to explain it.
The other night when I realized that if I can love my feet like that then I can love all of me like that was a turning point that caused me to take my love walk on a whole new level.
I started to understand in a greater way that I don’t have to wait until I am perfect to love me, pamper me, honor me, respect me, value me and to care for me.
I write about love and I speak about love but it was as I massaged my feet that it occurred to me in a way that it had not before that I am indeed lovable right now!
For some reason I was waiting on someone to validate me.
I have shed so many tears because I didn’t have a healthy romantic relationship.
A part of me thought that because I didn’t have a man who loved me that it was a direct correlation of my worth.
That part of me thought wrong.
I am glad I made the decision to take a break from dating and shower myself with love, because even though I wrote about it, even though I spoke about it, apart of me was still waiting on someone to deem me worthy of love.
It has become clear to me that it wasn’t until I decided to spend some time alone in order to really love myself that I started to realize just how much I was erroneously looking for someone to cosign and say that I was worthy of love.
It also occurred to me that the reason why it hurt me so deeply that I wasn’t able to maintain a healthy relationship was because I was valuing the opinion of someone else greater than my own.
I was giving my power away and that is such a dangerous thing.
I would wonder why I wasn’t attracting healthier potential relationship partners and then I would beat myself up because I wasn’t experiencing the love from someone else that I thought I should.
I wasn’t giving myself credit for releasing myself from my old poor relationship partners and refusing to accept any new poor relationship partners.
I was simply wondering ‘well if I am doing better than where is better’.
Evan Marc Katz says, “You’ll never stop attracting the wrong men, but starting now, you can stop ACCEPTING the bad behavior of the wrong men.” and I think he is right.
For some reason I was thinking that since no one had come along who was seeking a long term relationship and was willing to treat me with love and respect that it meant that there must be something wrong with me.
To be honest I even wondered if maybe I needed to just go ahead and settle for a poor relationship, because it seemed like the men in my life just don’t want the type of relationship I hope to have. I thought maybe I had been fooling myself when I would go through the process of believing that a healthy relationship partner was actually attainable.
Thankfully, I have turned away from that line of thinking.
I was operating in a scarcity mindset that there weren’t that many good men out there. This was causing me to feel the need to settle.
That is entirely not true. There are good men and women living all over the world who are seeking healthy relationships. I have to believe that I am worthy of finding a man who wants a healthy relationship with me.
I am gaining a deeper understanding of what it means to be confident in myself and I am beginning to see in a whole new way how much I am indeed lovable.
It is my goal to learn to hold myself in such a high regard that I never allow someone to treat me as poorly as I have allowed myself to be treated in the past.
I forgive old me.
Old me did the best she could and she got me to where I am today.
And even thought I am striving for better I am proud of where I am today.
I have spent far too much time hating myself.
I felt unworthy, unlovable, unattractive, unwanted, undesirable, unneeded, I just felt “un”.
I am always going to be too much for some people and that is okay. I am not meant for everyone. But who I am meant for will love me for who I am, the way I am.
I have been blessed with wonderful friends and amazing family members who love me for me. And while that is great, what is even better is that I am learning to love me – flaws and all.
I am finally starting to understand that I don’t have to wait until I am a better woman to love me.
Instead of waiting, I can love on me the same exact way I have been loving on my feet.
I can love me flaws and all.
That’s because no matter how much I try to improve myself and despite what Beyoncé says I can assure you that I won’t be waking up flawless.
I will always have idiosyncrasies and that is a good thing.
Those quirks and oddities are what help make me, uniquely me.
The people who don’t like me are not meant for me.
I cannot grow with them.
American Pastor Bishop T.D. Jakes once said “When people can walk away from let them walk….. because your destiny is not tied to the person who left.”
So here I am being me with my flaws and my perfections for I like you am indeed a flawed perfection.
I spent so much of my life upset with my flaws.
I don’t think it was until this week that I truly understood what it meant to give myself permission to love myself right now as I am in the present.
I believe I was so infatuated and awestruck by the woman I know I have the ability of being that I simply forgot to work to love the woman I am today.
I was mad at myself for accepting poor relationship partners.
I was upset with myself because I wasn’t able to get myself where I wanted to be in life.
I thought poorly of myself because I was a flawed human being.
I was forgetting that no one is perfect.
I simply wasn’t giving myself a break.
But this week I realized that I need to fully embrace where I am at. I need to enjoy my present. I will never have this moment again and so I truly need to cherish it.
I think I spend far too much time thinking about what is wrong with my life and not enough time giving thanks for the blessings that abound in my life.
I have been guilty of spending an unreasonable amount of time worrying about my future and an unnecessary amount of time regretting my past.
I have decided that where I am today at this precise moment is a place that I need to enjoy.
I need to love me right now!
I don’t have to wait until I lose weight, have a clearer complexion, get my career on track, break my bad habits or most certainly until someone comes along and tells me it’s okay to do so.
Here is the thing I can live out all my days and never have a man come along and offer me a healthy romantic relationship but that doesn’t mean that I am not lovable.
I am starting to truly see and accept that now.
I am starting to understand that if I die never having someone to share my life with I am still an amazing woman who is worthy of love- and if no one else’s then I am most certainly worthy of my own.
While there is indeed room for improvement there is absolutely no reason for me not to love myself 100 percent today.
Flaws and all!
I am lovable.
I don’t need anyone to cosign on it or give me their stamp of approval.
There is no need for me to have low self esteem or doubt my self worth.
No one else can appraise me or assign me value, especially not the people who have left my life.
So I have given myself permission not to fret over people and things I thought I lost.
I have also given myself permission to stop pondering on whether or not I meant anything to the people who have exited my life.
Why expend energy thinking about what is gone when I can use my energy to cherish what remains?
Why ponder about people who are not in my life when I am surrounded by people who are?
When it comes to my worth and my value I now award myself the position of decision maker.
And as the decider I have arrived at the conclusion that I am worth far more than I have ever allowed myself to believe.
It is for this reason that I am going to keep working on my confidence.
I want to value myself so much so that loving me will become second nature.
I recognize that my journey to self-love will be life long, but I have decided that my ultimate goal in life is to love myself and I am willing to die trying.
Please know that you don’t have to wait another day to love yourself. You can love yourself for who you are the way you are flaws and all. It doesn’t mean that you are not trying to better yourself but it does mean you love yourself for better or worse. You don’t need anyone else to validate you, you get to decide your worth.
© Renata Pittman, Renata Smith, Renata Nicole and RenataNicole, 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Renata Pittman and RenataNicole with appropriate and specific direction to the original content