Do you love yourself?

Trust me when I say I was the most co-dependent person you could ever meet in my old way of thinking.  Now it is so much more enjoyable to be at a place of allowing myself to be whole – to choose loving thoughts and actions for me with less thoughts of fear.  

How many times growing up in the Bible belt South had the biblical mandate of “Love your neighbor as yourself” rang through my ears and yet the part of “as yourself” just got overlooked?  

I understand it now and that understanding has led to relationships that are so much more fulfilling!

A lesson that keeps crossing my path and has become the center of my thoughts is 

“Am I approaching this choice, this person, or this situation 

from a place of fear or of love?”

My intentions have been, and are continuing to be, re-set from a place deep within.  

This place listens to me – my feelings, my heart rate, the pit of my stomach, the set of my jaw, the muscles in my shoulders and the quality of my sleep.  

This place asks loving questions within such as: “how do you feel about this?”, “does this person speak from a place of love or of judgment?”, “is this what you want in your life?”, “do you deserve better?” “are you happy?”, “do you feel powerless in this?”  

After I stop to question myself, then comes time to address it from a place of love – love for me – as well as my ‘neighbor’.

Excuse the French, but I have to share a funny story. Recently I went to a huge country camp out party with my best friend who does not drink coffee. Well…I do….every morning. No coffee…no wakeee…and then the day goes downhill from there.  To go get coffee at the big house required a bit of time, and missing the quiet morning beside the river so I was procrastinating and had just asked him if he wanted any. Of course he made it a point to give me a hard time with some comment of if I needed coffee that badly why didn’t I make sure I brought some?  

Karma arrived in the form of a fellow camper who offered me a large coffee from his stash. Well, since I was the one who was obviously addicted to the coffee bean drug I did not consider offering my healthy friend any of the fresh hot brew.  A few minutes later he mentions that NOW he wished he had some.  At that point I offered him some of mine….he walks away …within a safe range and mumbles loud enough for me to barely hear him “that’s okay….stingy bitch.” 

He’s not the kind of person to say something like that to me so I replied “I’m sorry ….what did you say?” He turned red and repeated it with a hint of a grin.  I busted out laughing and in that wonderful  freeing moment forgot the clutch on my mouth and said “Oh my gosh! I think I just had an orgasm…….say it again!”  Now he really blushed, grinned and said it more loudly and we both just laughed.  I felt like someone had handed me the keys to a brand new car! 

Seriously……….in learning to let go of taking care of so much in life I had been referred to as a “stingy bitch” and in that moment there were no words that could have been sweeter to my ears.  He was of course just giving me a hard time but unknown to him…..those were words of healing…..deep words of healing and like a touch from heaven that reminded me I am learning to let go.

A picture is worth a thousand words, so in conclusion I want to share the first 3 years of my journey after the divorce in this photo.  Yes…..in letting go…….the weight began to come off but more importantly notice the eyes.  

Now, take a moment every day and ask your body – look in your eyes and allow the answer to come to you to the question “do you love yourself as much as you love your neighbor.”

3 year Transformation starting from right to left.

Written by Debbie Kesley

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