Today is Valentine’s day 2017. This day has had different meanings for me depending on where I am in life, many of those days were filled with tears. But lately it has been a day of reflection.
A few years ago, I found myself in one of the most trying situations of my life. I was in a very toxic, highly emotionally abusive and sometimes physically abusive relationship. I had a clouded idea of what true love meant and it kept me trapped in a situation I should have never been in.
However, when I write out my list of regrets, it never makes the list because I consider it a point of learning and growth. If I didn’t flip it to a positive, I don’t think I would have ever made it to where I am today. I think depression and regret would have swallowed me whole. And this isn’t to say that I don’t have thlose days where I wish it never happened to me or where I wake up screaming in the middle of the night, this is to say I didn’t let it bury me. I found a way to let it help me grow.
Back then, we never celebrated valentine’s day. I convinced myself that the day didn’t matter. Even though to me it really did. I wanted the tokens of affection and everything else that comes with it. But today, as I reflect on love and my relationship, I realize that self love is the truest form of love there is.
When you love yourself, you free yourself.
You can care for yourself and you can give love to others. Now that I’m with the love of my life, it feels like everyday is Valentine’s day. Not just because of how he loves me, but also because of how I love myself. I think that is most important.
To me, self love doesn’t mean it is always perfect. There will be days when you wish you were someone else or wake up wondering what you are doing with your life. But, love should be unconditional. Understand and love yourself enough on those days to keep going. Be gentle with yourself. Celebrate yourself on those days when you feel on top of the world. Don’t feel guilty. Wrap yourself in so much love and care that you don’t allow things that mess with your spirit to come through.
Whether you are in a relationship or single, take sometime today to think about how you love yourself.
Here are some ways you can practice self-love today:
- Write yourself a love letter
- Get your favorite meal or snack
- Buy yourself something you’ve been wanting for a while
- Forgive yourself
- Dance to your favorite song