Love Yourself

My parents split up when I was about five years old. Neither one of them remarried or recoupled. My memory starts at about age four. I have no recollection of their relationship as a married couple. I do not remember seeing a real, healthy, committed, loving, romantic relationship modeled in my household when I was growing up.

I knew that my parents loved me and my siblings. They said it with their words, well Mom did. They showed it with their actions and presence. But I don’t recall seeing them love on each other in our house.

I didn’t see what it was like for my mother to still be loved after bearing three children. I did not see what it was like for her to still be loved after she lost the shape of her youth. I did not see what it was like for my father to still be loved during hard financial times. I did not see what it was like for him to still be loved after his once full head of hair dwindled.

I didn’t see it. I didn’t understand it and what’s worse is that I didn’t think I deserved that kind of long lasting love.

I didn’t think that every part of me deserved to be loved. The ugly, unkempt, imperfect parts of me. The stretch marks, the cellulite, the long second toe! I didn’t believe that I could still be loved on the days when I come out of my skin and I’m not talking about exfoliating. I am talking about the days when I hit a snot-nosed ugly cry for seemingly no reason. I mean on the days when nothing feels right or fits right. On the days when I’m irritated by everything and I lash out at whoever is around. I didn’t think that all of those parts of me deserved to be loved along with the sweet, kind, generous parts of me so I didn’t love them.

When someone else came around and tried to love me I wouldn’t let them because I didn’t believe it was possible. I thought I would do that person a favor by removing myself from the equation. It was a true disservice.
I shared this with my mom not too long ago. I’m talking about not having a relationship to model, not the part about me thinking I was undeserving. It hadn’t ever crossed her mind before. A few days later she called to tell me stories about my parent’s relationship. The fun that they had and the games they would play. It made me smile and laugh, more importantly it made me hopeful.

Next thing you know I’m sitting there almost in tears, but not the sad kind. It was an emotional relief. I realized that I do deserve to be loved. I deserve it at my best, my silliest and at my worst. I don’t have to put on a show to earn love. I can take off my cool, come out of my skin, or the side of my neck, and still be worthy of love, kindness, tenderness and respect.

I’m learning.

Happy (almost) Valentine’s Day Beautees!!!

8 Comments

  1. Reva, this is so beautiful. Your words are so comforting and thought provoking. Reva you are specially and wonderfully made. I Thank God for creating you and putting you in my life.
    Reva when you have time one day, please give me a call. I really want to know you more.
    Love,
    Sis Henderson 😊

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  2. Great read! Not seeing a loving relationship between your mom and dad growing up can sometimes hurt us in a way where we have self doubt with in ourselves and our self worth. I’m happy to hear that despite of what happened between your mother and father you now have that self love/worth and know that you too are deserving of the love you desire.♥️

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  3. A disservice indeed!

    Its funny how a gold medal can arrive in the nick of time, but at times you can’t see the beginning from the finish line. And all those championship dates are harder to make in our present state. Wait! Two souls with similar traits, fighting for pride what a mistake! Is it meant to be? Only God knows. We will just have to see what the future holds.

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    1. Gold Medals and finish lines huh? This was very well written and I must say that the thoughtful words have me smitten. haha. I shouldn’t be surprised. You always had a mouthpiece. 😉 Hope all is well.

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