My mum sent me a message this morning. She said she loves me so much and she wants me to be a great person (whatever a great person means.) So I smiled. I told her I love her too. And I really meant it.
This post is very personal for me. Maybe one of the most personal I will ever write. I know I love myself. Not even because I think I am worthy of it. But I think it’s self fulfilling and necessary for me. I know I will love myself even if my mum didn’t love me, although I appreciate her love. Although it feels good to be loved, I am not going to outsource my self worth to someone else. So I love myself. I love myself. I love myself. I don’t usually even say this to myself. It’s kind of gotten wired in my brain now. So if I realize I am getting into a situation that will make me miserable, I flee because I love myself.
I haven’t always loved myself. I hated myself. I hated my teeth. I have these cute big long teeth (it’s your job to imagine how something can be cute and big). At some point I was covering my mouth as I spoke to people. One time in high school I was speaking to my friends when one asked me why I was doing that. I had to think about that question. I hated my body. I hated that no girl liked me. And they still don’t. Smiles. I am twenty three and I have never had a girlfriend. I hated that people thought I was arrogant even when I was trying to be humble. In fact there was a time in my life when I was trying really hard to liked. I hated that I had almost no friends. I am still a very introverted person. The irony that beats me is that I can easily walk up to people and talk to them. Just that I don’t just like being engaged with people too much. I only need a little intimacy to be stimulated. I hated myself because there was nothing I was really good at. Even now, I don’t know what I am really good at. Really. I hated myself because I couldn’t speak good English. It was bad. I mean, sometimes I would want to make a point and just get stuck. I hated myself because I thought I was dumb. Interestingly, at that time, I was topping my class most often. But I was lazy. I wasn’t studying. So I wasn’t sure if I was really good or I was topping because my colleagues were also not studying. Besides, I had my English problems. The question that was raging at me at an unconscious level was- if you are smart why can’t you express your thoughts?
I hated myself because I couldn’t hold myself from crying. And I would usually cry till I vomit. I don’t know anyone else who does that. That’s what happens when I start sobbing. Sobbing is a notch higher than crying. I still cry, but there is less sobbing, therefore less vomiting when I cry. My thing with crying I can’t understand. It’s as if I find it difficult to suspend belief. A few days ago, I was saw a sad movie and I cried. My brain was telling me, “Dude, this is a movie. It’s not true.” And the crying part of the same brain says, “I know. But…” Tears. I am the kind of person who can go to a funeral of someone he doesn’t know and start crying when he sees others crying. All the while my brain keeps saying “chill bro”. At the same time, someone I know will pass away and I will feel nothing. I think I get emotional when I get close to sadness. In other words, I don’t really understand myself. But I love myself. I really do.
I have realized that loving myself isn’t something I can just say. I need to show myself that I love myself. When I was small, my dad had this book with pictures and a few words on patriotism. In the book, I will see words like- patriotism is a hollow word if you throw rubbish in the gutter. In the same way, loving myself is hollow if I treat myself like s**t. I would be lying to myself if I didn’t treat myself as someone special. I have to eat well, stay fit and look for ways I can grow wiser (like reading).
When I started loving myself I began to feel better. I began to accept my inadequacies. I felt at peace. I have bad days like anyone. And thank God for bad days; they make me appreciate the good ones. However, I am happier than I was in the past. So I love myself. Loving myself is work in progress because I don’t always love myself. But I am hopeful.