self worth

# 54 Where Cupid May Roam

With Valentine’s Day this week, love has been on the brain. Even when I was in a relationship, I never really bought into the idea of Valentine’s Day - well at least not the consumerism of it all.

As love is in the air and all that, it seems only fitting that I would write about my first Valentine’s Day as a single woman. They say we can only receive as much love as we feel for ourselves. How many of us seek affection for our validity of worthiness? I certainly have.

I have a habit of ignoring what is in front of me, and hoping for something greater than what it actually is. That subconscious conditioning that if only I could convince this date that I’m relationship worthy, then I would feel desirable. This is even before I have decided if I liked him in the first place.
— fivefootronna

 

There are many reasons for having, or lacking self-love. Life throws curve balls, though what it comes down to is how much we respect our vessel. Not just the physical one, but also the mental and spiritual part of ourselves. It means valuing rest or choosing our internal monologue. It’s a lot harder to switch off from the chatter in our heads, so may as well make it a good one.

At one of my meditation evenings, I asked how I can learn to trust my decisions when it came to men. The answer has always been there - to acknowledge that I’m still healing and that I’m afraid of getting hurt. I have a habit of ignoring what is in front of me, and hoping for something greater than what it actually is. That subconscious conditioning that if only I could convince this date that I’m relationship worthy, then I would feel desirable. This is even before I have decided if I liked him in the first place.

Do I love myself? Most of the time, yes.

I don’t think I can ever truly love all of me. There will always be parts of me that I wish were better. Like when you’ve just had a full on workout but you can still feel that layer of cuddliness in your middle. That’s human nature - we make it so easy to be critical of ourselves.

OK, so I didn’t spend Valentine’s Day alone this year - it was actually my second date with a guy I had met the week before. We saw a movie and grabbed a bite to eat. Of course our date involved food. I’m glad it wasn’t our first date though - I can’t think of anything more awkward than sitting next to a stranger in the dark, in silence.

My date was Greek and he’s teaching me that it’s never too late to learn a new way to love. To have love for myself. To value time with my family and family. To be a better lover. By loving myself first, it allows me to give more love to those I truly care about in my life.

He’s a tourist, so I’m realistic about how long he would stick around and that’s been playing on my mind. Can I give myself permission to develop feelings for someone that is highly likely to be only a temporary part of my life? Isn’t that a natural reaction though? To close ourselves off when there is a high chance that we might get hurt? Maybe he’s the one before I meet the one or he might be the third or fourth along. All I know is that the more I learn about him, the more I learn about myself and what I want to give and receive in my next relationship.

When we choose to live and love in the moment, it lightens the burden of expectations. It’s such early days yet, and there’s plenty still to discover about one another. Isn’t that what dating is all about? To be genuinely curious about each other, to explore and to see if two lives can merge as one?

Oh Cupid, want to do coffee sometime?

# 53 The Wolf In The Forest

On Monday nights I go to a meditation evening, which is usually a mixed bag depending on how my weekend went. Sometimes I fall asleep, and some days my mind is full of noise. With time, it gets easier to trust what is the divine and what is my ego trying to take over.

In my meditation, I was running alone through an empty field - acres and acres of soil ready to be sown. The dirt was wet, yet there were swirls of dust in the air. As the edge of the field drew near, I sensed I was not alone. There stood a grey wolf, waiting for me. We walked side by side into the forest, and as night fell, the wolf felt more human than animal. I wasn’t afraid.

To my left I saw the embers from a fire built by my imagination. Suddenly I could hear a faint drumbeat, which grew louder as we began to dance. The higher we jumped, the louder the music became. There in the forest, the wolf and I danced under the full moon. The dancing felt primal, and with each breath, I felt free for the first time in a long time.

They say that the wolf symbolises an appetite for freedom and living life powerfully, guided by instincts. Certainly there have been days I have felt shackled. Wolves as spirit guides is often a call to live more freely and to increase the intensity of what we are passionate about in our day-to-day. The role of the alpha wolf is as a leader, not a dictator. Their decisions is for the greater good of the pack, its survival.

Freedom, as the saying goes, is when you have nothing left to lose. In a society where we are conditioned to want, to consume, sometimes in excess - this phase is compelling me to rebel.
— fivefootronna

Freedom, as the saying goes, is when you have nothing left to lose. In a society where we are conditioned to want, to consume, sometimes in excess - this phase is compelling me to rebel. To live with less. In my vision, there were embers of a fire, but no food, no shelter. There in the forest I had nothing except the clothes I wore. Put simply, I have too many things in my basket. The basket is overflowing and the only way forward is to empty it and only keep the essentials. Purge the trimmings. To focus on what is truly important.

I have been guilty of a gluttonous consumption of life. Put simply, I have too many things in my basket. The basket is overflowing and the only way forward is to empty it and only keep the essentials. Purge the trimmings. To focus on what is truly important. Even if I can’t act on it in the physical straight away, it’s already begun in my head. Isn’t that why I have been such a hermit these last few weeks? To help remedy the fear of missing out is to see the real value in what we do, in what we have.

Often we are afraid to feel powerful, and seek outside of ourselves for the answers. In meditation, I have learned that questions are answered in clarity. It’s only my ego that muddles the waters. Trusting your instincts is not to listen harder, it’s simply to quieten the noise.

Which brings me to the point about trust.

Journeys are never linear, and it has taken me many wrong turns to get here. I believe in the bigger picture, my life path, and in free will. I knew from the start, even before I met my ex-husband that I would do something that will take me away from this town. It scared me because I had only just discovered my love of dance, and many more years before I began to share my writing. Did I stay with him because it anchored me? Maybe. Many people didn’t understand my need to wait to have children, and he didn’t at the beginning either. I think he accepted it in the end, he had to. Did I force that on him?

Guilt is a circumstance we have yet to forgive. Maybe that’s why I didn’t feel angry when I heard he was having a baby with her. I felt guilty for not being able to give him that when he wanted it. Is this my penance for choosing not to have children in my twenties? In reality, he too has free will. To think I had that much power over him is my ego talking.

To forgive all that happened is to first forgive myself.

A wolf can survive alone, but it thrives in a pack. Like the wolf in the forest, I’m not afraid to dance to my own drumbeat. The embers are just waiting for me to breathe life back into them, but for now I will wait. And dance. Yes, we shall dance!