How Far I Have Come Since Learning to Love Myself!
Updated: Feb 12, 2019
I cannot help but reflect now on how proud of myself I am. Over time I will express more on various things I know I have overcome, and how I feel about it. Today, as I am writing this ahead of the post date, for some reason I started to think about how truly proud I am of acknowledging that I am no longer trying to please everyone anymore. At least not nearly as much as I used to in the past. I finally am starting to feel ok with expressing my genuine thoughts and opinions on things regardless of what people think.
Even with relationships with friends or family now, I am not nearly as afraid to say what I mean anymore. I finally am learning to express myself and learning to not take everyone's energy, reactions, and actions so personally! I am starting to feel comfortable enough to speak my mind to those who do mean so much to me, and no longer worry about saying the wrong thing as much! I don't worry nearly as much about if my family or friends will understand what I am saying or care. It is so freeing and empowering to be able to feel that way now. I don't worry about family, friends, or anyone, in general, judging me because of something I say or choose to do anymore! If someone does not understand something that I say or do, by all means, they are welcome to ask me what I mean, or why I did something. However, I no longer feel pressure to need to always explain myself. If they are asking to try and understand, by all means, I will do my best to try to bring understanding. If they are asking in order to judge me then it would be best to not ask me then, or if I pick up on that I probably just won't bother trying to explain. I am at a point in my life where even more so now I am able to pick my battles a little better than I could before!
I mentioned in the post before this one, how it took me a long time to find out how to love myself for who I am. It really was a constant battle and struggle for me to learn to appreciate myself. Even right now I am still learning how, but I am better at it now than I was before. There were times in my life where I really did not think highly of myself. I was made aware at a young age that I was "not like everyone else" and as a young child hearing that is very hard and confusing. I grew up and got picked on a lot off and on throughout my scholarly career mainly because of my differences, but also for other reasons I do not know, or don't quite understand. People would see my scar on my lip and point and laugh. People would pick on me because of the way my voice sounded. It wasn't even just in schools. Things like this would happen even at restaurant playgrounds. Everywhere I turned, society told me something was wrong with me. Adults whose job was to help better me for my future I would soon eventually come to find out, that not all of them believed I could be able to achieve the type of career I wanted.
It really hurt! There are countless nights where I would lay in bed and cry myself to sleep because I thought something was wrong with me. I wasn't "normal". I never seemed to quite fit into the norms with other kids. I was so insecure about my appearance especially my scars, that whenever we took pictures or went to events I would have my mom put makeup on me to hide them. I had her do this off and on over quite a few years. All because of the things society said. I had her do this off and on until I finally reached a point where I did not want to have anything to do with makeup at all. The most I even consider wearing now is some lip gloss and that's it. My parents, damn, I have some good parents. They did what they could to try and bring me comfort in times like that, but sometimes it would only help for a little bit. Little did I know, I would finally reach a point where I would not care nearly as much about my appearance.
In addition to having issues with my appearance, I struggled with academics a lot too. I went to a public school for both of my two years of kindergarten, and my year of first grade. I had to repeat kindergarten because the first year I got taken out too much due to medical reasons. I then went to a Montessori school for second through sixth grade, and eventually went to a middle school designed to help children with cognitive learning differences. I struggled a lot before going to middle school. I can remember nights trying to do homework and I could not figure out how to do it and all I could say was "I don't understand". I could not even elaborate on what part I didn't understand. Nights doing homework would consist of a lot of frustration and honestly would end in tears sometimes. So, to add on to the already insecurities I had with appearance and health things, I also had insecurities with my intelligence. I struggled so much I genuinely began to think I was stupid and not smart. I felt at times inadequate in comparison to my peers. Once I started attending my middle school, things academically finally really started to turn around for me. I started being taught in a way I could understand and had a solid two or three teachers there who believed in me and pushed me. After going to that middle school, I went from being a kid who did not want homework and did not want anything to do with it, to a student who finally started to want to learn. One who would constantly ask for more work and finally started to do well! It was a miracle! From there my confidence academically kind of just started going up. I from there went to high school and got mostly A's and B's, I would have some C's here and there and even graduated with the National Honor Society! Had anyone asked 10 year old or even 14 year old me if I ever would have seen that happening I more than likely probably would have said no. Now, I have had 4 semesters of college under my belt almost. COLLEGE! Let that sink in! A girl who struggled academically, and did not think she would progress academically in a timely manner, is now in college! Wow! Before going to high school and being in middle school, I mean I would dream of doing my best to make it to college, but I don't think I ever thought I would get here in the time I actually have done it in!
I truly have overcome so many things, and I know I have. It makes me happy that I have, but I can't say I always remind myself of that. I am trying to do better of that. I still have off days, but nothing like what I had in the past. At least not typically. I am very proud of myself for it. I am still learning and growing as a person, and my own individual self. I am grateful to have been given the parents who were chosen for me, and all of my siblings. That goes for my step-parents as well. I know at times I have struggled with both to show my appreciation for them in the past, and even now sometimes, but they both mean a lot to me! I was truly blessed with the support system I have, and the family I have. I say it a lot, but only because I mean it with all of my heart. I may not have gotten to spend nearly as much time as I have wanted to with some of my family, but they always have been, and always will be my everything. That goes for my friends who are very close and dear to me as well! I have seen some pretty dark days, and I have been blessed to have been given the right people, at the right times!
I am so happy I am learning more and more now on how to love and appreciate myself. As well as, now learning to remind myself of the things I have already overcome, and reminding myself I CAN and WILL overcome whatever challenges continue to be thrown my way. I was born and raised a fighter, and that will never change! Self-love is so important. Once we start feeding ourselves the right things and have people around us who feed us the right things everything falls into place! Plus, another big part of that is you cannot love someone else until you learn to love yourself and learn to accept who YOU are as a person! In addition to that, learning to be content with being alone is something that has been interesting to learn! So, once all of those become understood and learned; then and only then, can we truly embrace another being or beings! I always thought that self-love was being selfish, or full of one's self, for the longest time. Luckily, I have finally learned it is quite the opposite of that. I am grateful that I am finally learning and understanding how to love myself, and how to treat myself a little more in ways I deserve to be treated!
My self-growth and knowledge of self-love are still continuing, and I am so happy about it! My life, and all of our lives is a never-ending storybook! I fully plan on never stopping to learn new things, and embracing new adventures and experiences! Even the hard ones! "Knowledge is power", and it always will be!
The Inspiring Hummingbird!