Tag Archives: loving myself

I Am Hopelessly Flawed.

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I have always enjoyed learning something new. And, most recently in my life, I have come to deeply appreciate when I have personal breakthroughs. I have not always appreciated this, because to have a breakthrough to me, meant that I had either hurt someone else, been hating on myself, or learned the lesson through some other difficult or painful means. I now understand that the most painful lessons for me bring the most brilliant recognitions in my life.

I have always sought in my mind to be a perfect human being. I always wanted to look just right; lose the right amount of weight; measure my foods in precisely the right amount per portion. I always wanted to be right on time for work, for play, or for an appointment. I always wanted to know about everything that someone would ask me; I would want to be the expert in any field of study. I wanted to be the best friend, mother, sibling, daughter, and co worker that there ever was.

I guess there is no harm in wanting to be the best at something in life. The problem has been for me, that being the best was an obsession for me. I saw myself as having to be perfect at everything, and when I wasn’t, I would criticize myself, or the situation. It would bring out the darkest, most undesirable parts of me, my traits. 

We all are made up of various traits and characteristics, that make us who we are. The ones that I tend to focus on are the ones that are most appealing: being kind; loving; compassionate; forgiving; patient; open; and honest, for a few examples. Yet, there are other traits that are always present within me that I don’t like to acknowledge live in me. And, when they show up, I get scared. I get defensive. My fists come up. And, I criticize and berate myself for having them appear; it is some of the darkest moments of self loathing for me. So to say that they live in me has been a challenge during most of my life.  Here are a few of my top traits:

I am a know it all. I am controlling about the slightest detail. I am judgmental to anyone who isn’t as “evolved” as I  am. I am arrogant. I am naive, to the point of feeling offended when my illusions are shattered. I am bossy. I am not willing to be a team player. I am dramatic. I am a gossip. I am stubborn about looking at things in news ways. I am unforgiving and resentful. I am selfish about my own needs. And no doubt, there are more that I could list here. 

These traits aren’t always how I am in the world, yet they do live in me. I was recently reading a book by SARK in which she was not only listing her various traits, she was celebrating them!  I was stunned, amazed, and confused. Why would one want to focus on them? Why not focus on the positive parts of ourselves?

I came to understand why a bit more deeply this week. I know that I have these traits that I see as more negative, and I am even pretty savvy at catching them when they pop up in my life and my relationships, at least most of the time. And, I most often choose the more positive, loving traits in my world. But, even if I didn’t choose those more often, I realized, SO WHAT? Really, so what? Loving myself means loving all parts of myself, the parts that I praise and the parts that I loathe. The Light and the Dark; they are all me.

Today, I am renewing my commitment to letting go of perfection and embracing my Perfection as I Am. Even though that may sound like the same idea, with the same word, it is completely different. It is the difference between conditional love, the need to be a certain someone in this world in order to love and honor myself; and Unconditional Love, the loving, honoring, and Celebrating who I Am, in all of my delightful, human ways. It is the difference between living according to our domestication, of how we have been carefully taught; and living in accordance with our true nature, our deepest, most authentic self.

Today, I announce, declare, acknowledge, and Celebrate every aspect of who I Am.

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Love Letter to Myself.

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Dear Vanessa, 

You are Beautiful. You are a radiant Light, and I am so glad that you are finally seeing, and shining that Light fully in the world. Of course, I have known it lived in you all along, but I knew you had to see it for yourself. Now, that you have discovered what was always there, there is no stopping it. Your Light is a beacon, a beam in the darkness when hope seems lost. It is ever present and will never leave you. Welcome to your own Loveliness.

 

You are pure Love. You have known this about yourself in glimpses here and there, yet I sense a major shift in the past months. You now know and understand that pure Love isn’t quantified by how many people you have in your world, in whether or not you are in a romantic relationship, or even if your relationships are going well. Pure Love never ends; it exists and lives within you and pours from you. It needs no reason for existence and it is eternal. You are pure Love.

 

You are Forgiveness in the making. I know that Forgiveness does not always come easily for you, mainly because you struggle with forgiving yourself. You are Perfect as you are, and when you see your own perfection, you are able to see the brilliant perfection in others as well. Forgiveness is easy when we understand that we are not flawed in any way; we are perfect, just as we are. I see you deepening your understanding and acceptance of that, and I see your ability for Forgiveness when you think that you fall short. Keep at it, my Love. It will get easier and easier.

 

You are both Universal and Unique. I know that you have often felt like an oddity in this world, like no one could possibly “get” you. So strange that people were uncomfortable around you. Of course, that was just your story you told yourself, as a way to keep you small and feeling like a victim. You are Unique, beautifully, wonderfully unique, in how you see the world, interact with it, and show your colors to it. And, you are Universal, part of the whole tapestry of this Life force. You are an essential part of it; your uniqueness adds to the radiant beauty of the whole entity. Remember that you are both and keep Being exactly who you are.

 

You are Perfect, Beautiful, Love, Forgiveness, Universal, Unique. You are all of these, and you are Beloved for it. Always remember, in every moment, in every breath that still lives within you, that you are Love, and Loved, beyond any measure.

 

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A State of Grace.

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Most mornings for a few weeks now, myself, and my wife on some days, walk to the lake that is right near our house.  We walk in one mile, and back out and home.  We sit by the water.  We spend time in nature.  It is an amazing way to begin the day for me.

 

As I walk in at the lake, I spend the first mile considering what I am grateful for.  Initially, when I first started this morning ritual, I would make a list in my mind, of all the people, things and circumstances in my life that I have gratitude for.  It enabled me to find gratitude for things in my life that might have felt challenging, or persons in my life that I had conflict with, or thought that I did, at one time or another.  It helped me to more deeply understand that gratitude is not just for the pleasant things, but for each and every thing, event, or circumstance that I find myself in.  Learning and growth comes from every experience.

 

Recently, instead of a list of things to be grateful for, I find myself simply feeling gratitude, being in the presence of that feeling.  To do this for me, means to be completely in the moment; and when my mind wanders, to come back to the present as often as possible.  A state of gratitude is remembering that everything that comes to me is a gift; every moment has something that it is offering to me, has beauty, depth, and value; and that if I am in a state of gratitude, I am able to see the beauty and worth in every moment.

 

Brenda described that to someone yesterday as being in a state of grace.  I have always had a difficult time understanding the concept of grace, and what that really means.  Yet, I believe that I have an understanding now that makes sense to me.  To be in a state of grace, for me, is to be present, and to be prayerful.  I may not be consciously saying prayers as I walk every morning, yet I am certainly aware of the beauty, sounds, and smells all around me, and have deep appreciation for them.  I am aware of nature and all that She offers to me.  I am aware of the strength and beauty of my body as I walk and move.  I am filled with love and compassion for others that are in my life, and beyond.  I feel inspired, blissful, peaceful.

 

I finally understand, that grace means to be present to my world, to all that is around me, and to honor its beauty and worth with my thoughts and presence.  Grace feels like a prayer that doesn’t feel like a prayer in the way that I have previously known, yet in such a more powerful way than I have experienced before.  Grace is Presence.  Presence is Grace.  And when I remember that, I am filled with a peace that I have never known.  

 

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Deep Gratitude.

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Yesterday was my birthday.  I am officially 54 years old, which is really a misnomer, because I feel 54 years young, as corny as that may sound.  I feel amazing.  My life is amazing.  And, I feel more blessed than I have ever realized in my life before now.  

 

At various times in my life, I have practiced gratitude daily for myself, and what that looked like in the past, was writing down each day what I was grateful for, in the morning before I would start getting ready for work.  I also would wear a bracelet, and count my blessings literally on the beads of the bracelet.  It was always a great way to start in the morning, before the hustle and rush of the world set in.  

 

Lately, I began the practice again, but not by writing down what I am grateful for.  During my morning walk, I think about all of the things and persons that I am grateful for in my world.  I find so many things to be deeply grateful for, because I am surrounded with gifts in so many ways.  

 

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A birthday on Facebook is hard to beat; I got dozens of birthday greetings, all lovely and caring, and celebratory.  I felt the love from every single person that wished me well.  It was really beautiful.  And, I felt grateful, for all of the persons in my life, and what a gift it is to have family and friends that surround me, at all different times in my world.  Then, last evening, I saw this beautiful message from my wife, in honor of my birthday, after an evening she had planned for me of fun and surprises.

 

I felt grateful for having us meet one another in the world, to walk this path together with a partner who supports me, and I support as well, and who I have fun with, travel with, and learn new things with.  It really is a blessing.  

 

I feel such deep gratitude for my son, and the relationship that I have built with him over the last few years, more deep than ever before.  And, as he begins this new phase of his life, it is also a new phase of mine, and that we get to share that with one another in love, friendship and support is a joy.  I am so grateful that he is in my world.

 

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I am so grateful for a strong, capable body, that carries me every day to my walks, to take out the trash, that does anything that I ask of it; and is sustaining me in healthy, loving ways.  I am grateful for the lovely home that I share with my wife, that keeps us safe and warm and cared for.  I am so grateful for being in nature, and seeing her sights and hearing her sounds outside my window every single day.  It is a gift to be able to live in and appreciate her beauty.

 

I have had challenges in my life, and I will continue to face them as life goes on for me. Yet, I find myself in joy the majority of the time, and I know that to be in a large part, because of Gratitude.  No matter what is happening with me or around me, Gratitude can always put things in perspective, by reminding me what I have that I am grateful for.

 

Reminding me of all of the gifts in my world.  

 

Waiting for the Sun to show up.

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I have loved being at the ocean for much of my life.  Although I have never lived on the coast, I have visited it from wherever I have lived.  When I was a child, we spent time at Hampton Beach in New Hampshire on summer days; we camped in Maine at Old Orchard Beach; we visited Cape Cod.  As an adult, for ten years my family rented a house for a week on Oak Island, North Carolina.  A week at the beach was absolute bliss.  Our honeymoon was spent at yet another ocean retreat, Tybee Island, Georgia.

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There are many things that I enjoy about being at the beach, at the ocean.  The time with my family.  The walks along the sand.  Shell finding.  And, the Ocean.  Looking out at the ocean, and its vast infinity.  Watching the waves crash against the shore.  See the dolphins play in the surf.  It is so peaceful, and awe inspiring.  

 

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When I am at the beach, I am always up early.  I hate missing a sunrise.  They are like few others that I have ever witnessed.  This morning was no exception.  When I walked out on the deck, and saw what was coming, I was inspired and so joyful.  Nature has such as easy, subtle way of shifting anything within me, to a place of pure peace and deep gratitude.  For her beauty and wisdom that She shares, just by doing what it is that She does every day.  

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I found myself waiting for the Sun to arrive, in beautiful anticipation.  Waves crashing against my legs.  Seagulls diving for treasures.  Amazed at the power and inspiration of it all.  

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And She did not disappoint.  As beautiful as ever.  Inspiring me to keep being my true Self in the world, to keep my eyes open to magic and beauty.  To go after my dreams.  To remember, that when I am my self in the world, my Light comes shining through.

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