What does it mean to love yourself? ♡

Is it wrong to love yourself?

What does it even mean?

We know what it means to love others and yet somehow loving ourselves can be portrayed as sinful & selfish.

Is it sinful or selfish?

Perhaps its how you define the word “LOVE”.

How can it be acceptable to love others and be frowned upon to love yourself. It doesn’t make sense?

To love others is to be there for them no matter what. To take good care of them and to do your best to protect. It means you take extra care to be thoughtful and kind. All you want for the one you love is the very best. You have there back. When the one you love hurts, you hurt. When the one you love is in trouble you are there. When you love someone you care about how they are feeling. When they tell you that something you may have done or said hurt them the most natural response is to feel awful and apologise. You make it right for the one you love. No hesitation. Its top priority!

Which brings me back to the question, what does it mean to love yourself?

As a young person i didn’t love myself i infact went the complete opposite and hated myself. This meant that i had no value in myself. This led me into making some very poor decisions. It was only natural to gravitate to people that treated me the way i thought i should be treated.

27 years worth of heartache and pain.

I married the person that matched their actions with my belief that i was not worth being treated properly.

Mistreatment followed.

Not many understood my journey except to see that on the outside i didn’t look happy.

Despite our church attendance and my occassional questions to other church going wives i was always left with the idea that i had to change and be the wife my husband needed me to be. That all i needed to do was PRAY and God would change my husband.

I prayed,  i cried, i felt hurt and angry, i was lonely, confused,  anxious,  i prayed, i cried, i hurt so much. I tried and i tried. I read books, i went to womans conferences, i asked for prayer. I was desperate. I was depressed.  I lived with so much confusion.

NOTHING SEEMED TO WORK.

UNTIL. …

I REALISED. …

That this man was never going to change and i did not need to stay in this unhealthy relationship any longer.

Over the last 10 years of our marriage i started to realise i was valuable.

I didn’t deserve to be abused and mistreated!

Abuse does not need to be physical. Its the silent treatment,  mistreatment, neglect, manipulation,  the hahaha moments when they make a joke at your expense in front of others. Rather than supporting you they leave you to take care of yourself. You aren’t their priority you are their toy. They hurt you by hurting those you love. They dont care about your feelings as its all in your head. Your too sensitive. There is no remorse to the hurt they inflict emotionally. While you are hurting they are laughing. Its hilarious to see peoples reactions they say! I love pushing peoples buttons to let the real person out that people hide, they tell you, you know their true colours.

Is that love?

Is it wrong to love yourself enough to recognise that someones mistreatment of you is wrong?

Loving yourself is knowing who you are and not letting another human being inflict harm on you. Its harmful to be manipulated, its harmful to be controlled,  its harmful to be ignored by the one that says they love you.  Its harmful to be laughed at or laughed about in front of others.

The damage digs deep.

It closes your heart.

You lose your own voice as you settle believing your feelings and thoughts mean nothing.

For me loving myself meant that i removed myself from harm. I realised my value and worth as a human being. I cant even imagine the outcome had i stayed any longer.

LOVING YOURSELF IS NOT SELFISH OR SINFUL, it is necessary in order to keep the balance and to know when enough is enough!!!

 

 

 

 

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Inching >>>F>O>R>W>A>R>D>>>

In the past three months you could say that my life has been a learner driver’s obstacle course. A lot has happened! There have been unexpected pot holes, choices to consider whilst under pressure and decisions to make with hopeful precision. Both practically and emotionally there has not been a quiet moment. Having never been in this position before I feel very much like a learner driver behind a steering wheel for the first time!

An experienced driver would navigate an obstacle course a lot quicker with better control. Experience is not something I possess in this particular obstacle course I am travelling on. In other words this road is foreign to me. I guess this is what happens when you hit a new season in your life. It is all about the unknowns.

When life is making sense moving forward comes without effort. It’s as though everything is aligned. Your emotions are content, circumstances are as they should be and it is much easier to step into each day motivated and driven. You are familiar with the scenery which makes it easier to keep driving comfortably through life.

Life is like that though; you never know what you may need to walk through or in my case ‘moon boot’ through. None of this was planned. It has been a little like taking a step forward and then a step back. It may not look like much progress yet the reality is I am moving forward each and every day.

All of this moving forward has been with a sore foot and sore emotions.

When circumstances are not the ideal it is all too easy to get stuck in the problem. Believe me, I know!

It is also tempting  to get stuck on social media such as face book and get wrapped up in envy as you see how great everyone else’s lives are looking compared to yours. Don’t we all just want a life that is smooth sailing and happy? I know that is all I have ever wanted. Life has proven to me that it is not smooth sailing and happy all the time. Most of my recent blogs are all about my current storm.

Storms come and storms go!

In the storm it is hard to see too far ahead. In the same way as ships use the navigation system to keep heading in the right direction, I mostly have to use my head knowledge to get through this storm. It is about using common sense. It is about keeping to my values and convictions. The values I own help me keep focused in the midst of this storm. If I keep my eyes on what I believe to be true then I have assurance that I will get to the right destination. One that is safe and secure.

It has taken me many years to learn and understand that if something or someone goes against my values and beliefs then I need to consider what is going on. When you compromise your values you get into trouble and eventually you won’t be happy with where you are headed. Your life becomes conflicted. You know what is right on the inside yet for whatever reason or for a person you have chosen to let things slide for too long just to keep peace.

When you are content with your convictions and values they can become your navigation through the storm. For too long my values and convictions were almost turned off. One day I realised that I was not being true to myself. It resulted in a lot of confusion and questions.

As a young person I was all too easily swayed with keeping everyone happy at the expense of my own happiness. By that I mean I compromised what my heart was telling me and allowed others to hurt me. The truth is people will hurt you which is where forgiveness is necessary. However if the hurting continues it becomes damaging. That is when you need to remind yourself of your convictions and values. These convictions and values may require you to take a stand. It is only when you are living to your convictions that you will be truly content.

When we are physically or emotionally hurt it takes time to heal. It may seem that the progress is going too slow. Just like my foot it has taken four weeks with several more weeks to go. The fracture is not visible to me so naturally I can’t see the healing taking place. Some days my foot doesn’t ache and other days it does. As I continue doing what the doctor told me  I can rest assured knowing that eventually my foot will mend and I can kick the ‘moon boot’ off and enjoy wearing my own shoes.

In the same way my emotions are fractured, they are better some days and not well on others days. This doesn’t mean that progress has stopped. We can be healing on days when our heart is aching. While I do believe in miracles, I’m aware that usually progress takes time. Moving forward can be slow yet steady.

Whatever it is that you may be ‘inching’ forward in at the moment remember to stick to your values and convictions.

Don’t throw away common sense, keep your head on.