I think we’re all born with a knowing of what love is. Knowing that it’s something we need. If we don’t know this how does a child grow up knowing or feeling there is no love or not enough love in their family, even when parents/guardians are doing the best they can.
It’s a sense we have. We just know.
Growing up I felt unloved and unseen feeling I was not loveable and there must be something wrong with me.
As I grew older, I felt I was missing something, it felt empty to me. I couldn’t find what I was looking for in the world around me, so I escaped into a fantasy world looking for ‘true love’ thinking that I would find it in/with another person. I thought if I could find someone that loved me that would prove I was loveable. But this didn’t quite work! Even when I found someone who loved me for who I was, I realized, I was not able to let this love in! Thinking that anyone who loved me must have something wrong with them too.
When people spoke to me about self-love it seemed like a pointless concept, definitely not grand or romantic. In fact, it sounded boring. Wasn’t the point of love to fall madly in love with someone who would love you back – a partner who would make life fulfilling and make you feel complete?
But actually, I have come to realize now that unless I learn to love myself, I won’t truly let love in from others. And also, if I love myself, I won’t feel needy with others for love, because I will already feel complete and loved. This was quite a discovery realizing that loving myself felt just as special as finding the ‘perfect love’ I had wanted from someone else, and in fact it is the love from and for me that I have been missing all this time.
Learning to love myself was not something someone could tell me how to do, or something I can explain in detail. It was an inner exploration, allowing myself to take tiny steps into new territory. Checking in with what I felt and what I needed to support me. For example if I was tired I went to bed early, if a person didn’t feel right I wouldn’t hang out with them, if it was cold outside I would wrap up snuggly so I was warm when going out .. just really simple things, kind of a checking in with myself which I kept doing consistently and it made a MASSIVE difference.
I have begun to see the impact of that love on everything in my life. It feels richer and more meaningful and now I realize what I have known all along that love is inside me, eternally there, just waiting to be connected to. We are made of love. The more I live this way, the more magical life feels to me.