love yourself

Sometimes, I Forget… Learning to Love Again

me

I wish I could say, “I can do it all.”  I’d like to.  I’d like to know it.  To see it. To have it.  To make it.  To sing it.  To write it.  To say it.  To play it.  To create it, find it, feel it.  And maybe even fake it.  And sometimes – I can…  Because…I’m a fixer.  I think I’ve been tasked by the Lord to fix every problem known to man – because if I could just find the solution, life would be better for everyone.  Or at least that’s what I’d like to believe… Sometimes.

But, what I’ve learned when I sink back down into my reality of life on Earth, is that not only am I unable to fix everything – I am actually guilty of the unthinkable sin – forgetting.  I forget that in my humanity, I will make mistakes, more often than I prefer and in the times that I’d wish I could make them go away the most.  I forget that even if I sometimes feel invincible, life can go on in my absence.  I forget that when I don’t pull it together, it affects the ones I love the most.

I forget that my minor mistakes will not turn the corporate world upside down.  I forget that some people who say wonderful things about me are only pretending, and I should get over my hurt feelings quickly, because those people are everywhere I go.  I forget that people I love may hurt me by accident, but I must still love them on purpose.

Here lately, I’ve forgotten some things that were more important.  I forgot to remember to chase what I love…

I forgot that in the midst of doing a good job at my job, and doing a good job for my family, and a good job for my friends and a good job for my students and a good job for my clients, to do a good job at remembering me.  And so I’ve watched the dreams that I’ve been attempting to catch, almost wash away.  That was scary.  I forgot to love me.

I forgot, what I loved…because I haven’t made the time to love it the way I used to.

Time up.

So I’ve decided that instead of losing myself in the world-of-being-overwhelmed, I’m going to lose myself instead – in love.  In the people I love.  The things I love.  The places I love.  In loving myself…and the One who loves me most.

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Every time I learn that someone has “passed on,” I am reminded of how fragile and temporary our lives are here.  Losing my dad…has still hurt me the most, to date.   I know I can’t stop myself from losing anyone else, as everyone has their appointment with Him.  But knowing our lives are limited, it makes me want to love more, and deeply; meaningfully; genuinely.  Because if I don’t, my opportunity to express – or feel – that love, may go away.

So here are my tips and tidbits.

  1. Celebrate every sunset.  Cherish every cloud.  No two are the same.  You should treasure them both – and everything that is equally beautiful!
  2. Say, “I love you,” whenever you can.  You may think they know it, but you don’t say it nearly as often as you should.  It feels so much better to hear it.
  3. Forget about the expensive things.  They’re nice, but overrated.  Remember that things that are unique to the ones you love are the most special of all.  Show them that you thought about them so much, that what you’re sharing wouldn’t be special to anyone else except them.
  4. And lastly, remember that love isn’t just for the person you date or marry.  You have more relationships than you know.  Show everyone you love how much you love them.  It will last for a lifetime.

I know who I love the most…and I’m so glad, they love me.

#thankyou, #catchyourdreams, #inloveagain, #learningtolovemelikeilovethem

Picture:  Remembering one of the many things I love… #thebeautyofnature

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Love Yourself Enough…

trellisspa

Soft rippling water, aromatic fragrances, sumptuous fruit and magic masseuses.  These are among the many luxuries at my favorite hideaway, nestled in a quiet neighborhood not far from the Galleria.  I’d been to many a spa, but my close friend – the artist who doesn’t know she’s an artist – first introduced me to this haven, and it is undoubtedly my preferred place to visit when I feel like I really need to love me some – me.  I mentioned it recently in a conversation with a fellow co-worker when we both concluded that sometimes we need to press the pause button in our lives.

Of late (and to my surprise), I’ve experienced a terrible flare up with a most challenging ailment – tempromandibular joint syndrome (also known as TMJ).  It’s a severely painful disorder that affects more women than men, typically between their 20s and 40s, and while there are several factors that can contribute to the diagnosis, one of the largest factors is stress.  Stress!  Imagine that.  Me!  The queen of all things bubbly and content!

As I begin recounting what I’ve been doing lately, I was trying to search for how I could have arrived at this unfavorable destination.  In honesty, I do realize that I hate conflict, avoid it at all costs, and suffer from the Superwoman Syndrome as well (O.K., so I made that up – but I do think it’s a thing)!  I have many epiphanies through dialogue, though.  I concluded that in my effort to take care of everything to do on my growing To Do List – I forgot how important it is to take care of me.  Sound familiar?

My indicators?  Weight Loss.  Migraines.  Extra doctor visits. Fatigue.  And TMJ flare ups.  The latter feels the most serious, as the pain, on a scale of 1 -10 this week reached at least 11 or 12, complete with an Emergency Room visit, and that can be quite scary.  So here’s the thing.  I’ve also discovered that I am not the only one who is immensely committed to taking care of people, places, priorities, problems, and preferences – but when we attempt to do this without taking care of ourselves, we create – a mess.

I believe most of us love ourselves, but my question is – do we love ourselves enough?  I think I’ve been loving myself to a minimum; putting my emotional, physical, and spiritual health at risk because I thought I could handle putting myself on the back burner for the sake of getting the job done; making the perfect presentation; crossing everything off the to do list, and making sure everyone’s needs were met – except my own… But it came at an expense that was higher than I could afford.

So I’ve decided to love myself more.  My husband, mom, and best friends seem to share one chief edict for me:  “Slow down!”  I admit, I find it terribly difficult; but, I’ve since added to the directive, “and love myself enough.”  I’m going to love myself enough that I schedule time – to relax; to rewind; reflect, and rejuvenate.  For the past two days, I’ve done…nothing.  Which for me, is quite the feat…because I always feel I should be doing something!  Well, my “something” this weekend entails taking care of Carla.  And though difficult, I like how it feels – and I’m feeling much better.

Take Away:  If you have not been loving yourself enough, rewrite your road map.  You are of much better use to your family, friends, employer, local fellowship, or whomever, when you are healthy, happy, and whole.  If you don’t love yourself enough, your body will protest – in one way or another.  Don’t wait for the fall out.  Leap forward – and relax! #catchyourdreams, #catchsomerest, #loveyourself

P.S.  I highly recommend the Deep Tissue Massage.  It’ll change your life!

Picture:  The Trellis Spa of the Houstonian, The perfect destination for ultimate relaxation.