In My Heart of Hearts
I spent the Christmas holidays touring the pyramids in Cairo and temples of the Nile Valley in Egypt. It was a jam-packed schedule and one I wouldn’t want to repeat any time soon. As a result, I didn’t write a blog in January. I haven’t missed a month since I started blogging so I had a twinge of guilt and then decided that it’s okay to miss a blog now and then. After all, who’s counting other than me?
After a lifetime of pushing myself to do more, be more, I have decided to relax about it all. I have nothing left to prove. I’m in the enviable spot of not having to answer to anyone other than me, myself and I and she’s given up being a taskmaster. :>) I’ve known this is something I have needed to do for some time but it’s one thing to know something intellectually and quite another to KNOW it deep down in one’s heart.
Now in my heart of hearts, I’m choosing to break yet another pattern, as it’s no longer serving me. The pattern is ‘striving to achieve’. And I’m embracing the pattern of loving myself unconditionally, quirks and all.
It’s a human trait to want to be loved. I was deeply loved by my father. Although he passed when I was six years old, I can still feel the intensity of how much he loved me and I him. I never really had that with my mother. She did love me but she utilized me as her rock to cope with being a single mother. I gave my mother more than she ever gave me emotionally. I often refer to my mom as a bit of a Jekyll and Hyde – loving me one minute, spewing out alcoholic rants of abuse the next. She was a broken woman in so many ways; my heart went out to her. I did my best to pick her up and try to make her happy. My efforts were always temporary; she died a sad woman.
I had three older brothers, one was a bully who terrified me growing up and hurt me deeply later in life; one a psychopath who betrayed the ultimate trust and raped me when I was sixteen and ruined a relationship I thought I could depend upon. The third loved me unconditionally. He gave me support and made me laugh like no other. He passed in a fire far too early when our house burned down when I was nineteen, leaving me forever changed.
I was born into a family where I had to learn how to strive at a very young age. And it worked. By sheer force and determination I found my way out of dysfunction to lead a very successful life. I have moved a metaphorical mountain in my lifetime to be where I am today but believe me, what I had to overcome has taken its toll. Not surprisingly, my pattern of unrelenting determination with compassion for everyone else, except me has left me with a depleted endocrine system.
My body is forcing me to change my ways with the same force it took to get to this point in life. Late last year I hit the wall in a puddle of exhaustion. It was as if somebody pushed my ‘force-quit’ buttons and I went offline. When I finished my last group workshop in December, I went home and collapsed on the couch full of cold and fever, unable to give any more. I was done. The universe was screaming loud enough this time for me to pay attention to the message: ‘REST & REJUVENATE!’ And so that’s my mantra for this year.
We need to learn to love ourselves before others will love us the way we want to be loved. And I thought I did love myself, well, actually I do but not to the level that is required to avoid exhaustion and illness. Despite my self-love, I still pushed myself too much. Not content to merely be a good coach and help people, to feel great again, I’ve stated that I want to make a difference to others on a profound level. Wow, talk about pressure! (And I’m smiling at myself as I write this.)
Admittedly, I’ve just now realized the deep importance of unconditional self-love.
I, Pam, shall do the following out of love for myself:
- Be gentle on myself. I deserve it. (So do you.)
- Meditate and connect to my spirit. She’s been with me through this entire journey and remains my champion with unwavering, constant strength. I love my inner rock star.
- Continue to be a recovering perfectionist. Perfectionism causes anxiety and life dishes up enough pressures, why add this one to the mix?!
- Practice gratitude everywhere. (I’m SO grateful you have chosen to read this blog! x)
- Enjoy my ‘self’ & relish periods of introspection. I truly do enjoy my own company. I’ve got a wicked sense of humour and think interesting thoughts…or at least I think so. :>)
- Give myself in service to others incrementally, in tempo with my energy level.
- Take a break from it all. And this point starts in February with two glorious weeks at a wellness centre in the sun of Thailand with just little ‘ole me.
It’s time for a lot of self-love. #Rejuvenation
Self-love is not egotistic. It’s a way of being that is kind and caring and brings happiness. Often we are so busy waiting for someone to love us that we’ve forgotten about the one person we need to love first and foremost, ourselves. Even if others haven’t loved you the way you deserve, you can choose to love yourself that much and isn’t that a wonderful thing.