Wow what a month! I am just a few years away from turning 50 years of age and only now am I FINALLY understanding that real love starts with SELF.
It’s taken some deep introspection lately, to get to this level of overdue clarity. And may I add, this has only been happening over the last year due to my son not needing me as much and preparing to soon leave the nest.
Watching him make a conscious effort to claim his own identity and life without me has been truly humbling, because I was suddenly faced with too much time on my own and found myself looking around wondering who or what to ‘fill’ it with.
And that’s when it hit me, that I cannot keep ‘using’ others to fill the void of emptiness within myself. Mind you I already had someone in mind who I could lean heavily on to fill this new gap. But then I thought, wait a minute, why not fill this new time with ME..?
Let this time, Lioness-Queen be occupied with you and what you love to do and shower yourself with love for the first time in a very long time. I finally understood that in the order of motherhood and child rearing, I could now afford to allow my life to be filled with serving and being there for me just that little bit more.
And so I decided to rediscover myself, my passions, what I enjoy doing and spending my time on when I am not giving and or attending to others or needing others to make me feel whole and complete.
To be honest, some days were quite scary, sitting in an empty house (physically and spiritually) with just myself to contend with.
Many a times I was tempted to just pick up the phone and get into a long conversation with my girls, who are always up for hours and hours of chit-chat! But I knew the time had come to be and do differently.
First it was becoming comfortable with the sense of emptiness and tuning into that quiet time to reintroduce myself to myself.
And most importantly, in my overly busy life – it was a time to get comfortable with not being busy or occupied with school drop offs, lunch preparation, countless sporting activities and everything else that I am so good at picking up and filling my days with.
Now there was just me.
I yearned for my little baba to look back and see that mommy might not make it alone, and to come home more often to cuddle or share a meal together. I was tempted to call my friends to come over and share all their dramas and life challenges with me so I could throw myself in there and help figure out which of their partners we needed to go take out and bury (wink)!
But being in the middle of a global pandemic and very conscious of my risk exposure, safer at home became a ringing reality.
So back to work on Self I went, sometimes finding comfort in finding just that perfect spot in my home to sit, read a good book and enjoy a cup of tea undisturbed by anyone.
And on other days there was time to finally clean out that cupboard full of things to give away and or throw out that I had never quite found the time to attend to it all.
Some days the silence and alone time became so deafening, I would jump into my car and head out for some quick retail therapy. Which I realised is quite ok, because for a change I was shopping for me and spoiling myself.
And with all this time to myself, I even had the luxury of time to try on new styles and explore new looks and play a bit with the transition of newness this all presented.
I had time to meet a friend for a safe take-away coffee at the car wash, I had time to visit my folks and bond with them without having to rush off for school pickup.
I finally had time for me and to do what I love and be ok with loving myself. Some days in the silence of doing absolutely nothing in the comfort and peace of my home.
I write this letter and share with you so that as we make time for ourselves and our loves, let’s never forget the importance of giving to and nurturing ourselves too. Because we also matter…
Congratulations, we broke through our own glass ceiling of drama and years of self-inflicted pain.
Once and for all destroying the misconception that someone else and outside situations were responsible for loving me and making me feel whole – either than myself.
The truth is, I am my own greatest reason to love myself enough. Never anyone else’s.
It is my job and life purpose to do the work on discovering and understanding how to love myself well, and to be first and foremost my own best friend and greatest love before expecting anyone else to fill that role.
And you know what, I love you, I really do. I am enjoying spending time with you and finding out what you enjoy, where your passions lie and what your greatest daily pleasures are.
I love how it’s the simple things that make me smile, like that cup of black rooibos – no sugar, no milk served in my favourite mug.
I love that sitting at home looking out into my beautiful garden can bring such peace and tranquility to my soul and remind me of every single one of my blessings that I will never take for granted.
I love being able to indulge in a long leisurely bath or a trip to the spa for some well needed pampering.
All in all, I am loving my time alone and getting to treat myself with pockets of time just with myself.
It was scary in the beginning, only to discover that time with Self is actually so liberating and freeing.
I am not only freeing myself, but also those that I love and cherish in my life, because I finally understand that it never was their job to love me, but my own.
Cheers to more moments of self-discovery.
I love you with all my being,