Recognising when I need self love. 

I have lost count of the number of times I have found myself bent over a snoring child, in the darkness of a quiet bedroom, showering her face with butterfly kisses while tears stream down my face. My heart filled with regret after a day that I have been overly negative or critical; nagged, berated and yelled too much.  I make heartfelt promises to be a better mom tomorrow and beg for her understanding and forgiveness. My child stirs. I accept this as an acknowledgement that she has heard my confession. I sit on the floor, in silence, as the weight of guilt lifts gradually from my aching shoulders. Eventually I get up, walk away slowly and close the door behind me, gently.

I don’t always have great days. It is especially on these exhausted evenings that I am reminded about balancing my passion with personal limits. While it is tempting for the mind to allow thoughts of self-pity or spin convoluted excuses, I will usually put aside all non-essential tasks and spend time with me. I have learnt to recognise that when I have given too much of myself, my spirit is not in equilibrium. I react explosively; I lack patience and speak hurtful words. Yet feel awful guilt afterwards.

It is time for some self-love. I may take a warm bath, sing my heart out to some great music or a lose myself in a good book, apply a luxurious face mask or start writing. On some evenings, I sit in meditation to bring myself back to my center. I allow thoughts to come and go, try hard not to dwell on them or pass judgement. When an emotion is reluctant to leave, I sit with it and feel deeper into it. Messages, images and physical reactions that occur during such quiet sitting cannot always be rationally understood but our spirit heals nonetheless.

Life is as much a journey of detachment and healing as it is of unconditional love.

4 thoughts on “Equilibrium

  1. Be the Best You says:

    Reblogged this on Be the Best You and commented:
    This is another great message. We all need to take time to practice self-love and caring for ourselves is an important way to do this. In all we do for others, it’s important to put ourselves first so that we CAN help others and accomplish all of our own goals.

  2. MicheleMariePoetry says:

    I think we mothers sometimes think that we can take our ‘career’ selves into our ‘mother’ selves. We try so hard to accomplish so much, feel disappointed when we/out children fall short.
    One of the greatest things I ever heard on the radio was an interview of an important famous man who ended up being gifted with a down-syndrome son. He said that the son had brought the family together. When asked what that child had taught him most, he replied, “This child taught me to slow down.” I put my arms around those words, and realized that the same was true of my children. They had taught me to slow down, live the moment, and let go of my goals, my quotas, my ambitions. I had come to realize that my kids were my goals, my ambitions, my quotas, that being there for them, smiling, waiting, playing, learning that they were teaching me patience and letting go, that they were the greatest gift life could have given me. I changed my tune from a clean/spotless neighbor ready home to having a happy cheerful home where my children found joy. I learned that if something meant I was going to ‘yell’, then it wasn’t something that was welcome to me. I learned there were other routes to fulfillment, to teaching my children, and that my yelling said more about me than it did my children. I found creative ways to get the responses I needed from my children, things like black outs (no tv till chores are done), multiple consequences to drive home a lesson, (when my daughter had a temper tantrum when I said it was time to leave McDonald’s playplace- I smiled, took her to the car – had to carry the screaming child– Then, for the next month- everytime we passed an eatery, I’d say, “Yay! Let’s go to McDonalds Playplace!” then we’d all cheer, then I’d keep going and say, “No, last time we went, you screamed and kicked.” Then do it again the next play place we passed. When we finally did go, and it was time to leave, I said, get your shoes and lets leave, she ran like a bullet, got her shoes, and was ready to leave in a second. She had learned, the tantrum brought bad results.
    I learned that I had previously put so many expectations on myself, and needed to just love my imperfect family, and my imperfect self .

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