On Loving Oneself

Some weeks ago, one of the graduate trainees at work asked me, "How does it feel to be approaching the age of 30?"

I chuckled, because I had to make it yet to 29 before eventually hopping on to 30. But I responded nonetheless: "It feels normal. It doesn't feel like I'm afraid to cross it since I've done so many things I set out to do since I was 25."

And then I remembered myself when I was 25. 

At 25, I was lost, confused, crazy, wild, even. I had these wild ideas about life and how we should all do things at once because there's never a perfect time to do them all but now. Heck, I even wanted to get married at 25. I wanted to jump off a plane at 25. I got drunk most nights when I was 25. I smoked almost a pack of cigarettes at 25. I cursed like a sailor at 25. I jumped into planes without prior notice at 25. I rocked out at concerts at the age of 25 {not that I'd ever stop, ha!}, chased international musicians, tried out all sorts of alcohol until I passed out {while a friend took care of me, thankfully}, and many more things I can never say in this blog. It had been a pretty good life that when I had to face death in the eye sometime ago, I was not afraid. It was like I tried to cramp so many adventures into five years that I was able to get it.

One day, I just woke up finally growing up. Growing up from my list and needing other things, but also retaining a certain sense of adventure I didn't have when I was younger. As I went through my list again, I took a long hard look at the love yourself part and thought: What does it mean again?

It was complete, utter acceptance. It wasn't primping, or being narcissistic or getting a massage or me time.

It was embracing who I was, bad decisions and all {and yes, there were many}. It was a long, hard and winding process to getting there because we kind of want someone else to love our flaws and yet we don't. At least I didn't. I got to a point where I was okay with them, these things about me, flaws, chismis, stuff that I buried in the past, I'm running away from and trying to forget. But I was never happy about them. I always said when asked if there's anything I'd change about my history that there's nothing but there is a lot, as a matter of fact.

Until that day that I realized if I couldn't celebrate my own history: my own wretched, crazy, adventurous, silly, funny, charming history, who would? I didn't wait for plane ticket sales before booking tickets, approvals, someone to come along or a perfect time so why did I have to wait for this? I could do it now, and I was the only one in charge of it. I can choose to embrace the fact that I don't have abs as much as I want to, the fact that a certain embassy keeps on denying me, that my nose isn't just the way I like it to be, that I have a love-hate relationship with my hair, that I am an overcompensating human being and often get shortchanged for my own good, that I'm just not the type who fits in anywhere, that my crush for a long time didn't like me {shet, babaw}, that the food I cook sometimes doesn't taste edible {ack!}, that I feel bad when someone doesn't get my charms, that I've been single for the longest time and that I hated it most times, that I live alone and yes, I dread Christmases, and other holidays and I have to keep a straight face when people ask me about it, that I tweak myself every now and then to appear acceptable to the people I want to keep in my life but fail, miserably so, and the fact that, really, I am just a very simple girl when it comes down to it.

Ano namang kalokohan yung inaccept ko yung flaws ng iba except my own? 

So I did. I just finally did.

Or I think I did. 

I shed off my notion that the only way to be loved is to be perfect. That it wasn't enough to just be okay with them. To love was to celebrate them. And it is one of the best feelings in the world.


*Art above is featuring Isabella Rosellini in Blue Velvet by David Lynch as taken by Francois Fontaine in 1986.

Catch my daily posts via Live an Inspired Life on Facebook!