Carrying on from my last post First Comes Love, Then Comes Marriage…
There is a tiny, yet massive secret behind that famous nursery rhyme. Love, marriage & a baby carriage is essentially the cycle of life, but it doesn’t happen like that for most of us. And it sure as hell didn’t happen that way for me.
There was one four letter word missing from the nursery rhyme. It took me years; 35 of them to be exact, to understand that one word made all the difference.
The Nursery Rhyme
The nursery rhyme implied that love was external and when you found someone who loved you, the rest would all fall into place. But that’s not the truth.
I was the poster-child for co-dependency. I lived my life as if I was a chameleon; changing my behaviours, my thoughts, my beliefs to fit into the current situation. I was really good at it too!! I could be the party girl, or the submissive housewife. I could be innovative or completely dependent. I adapted to each relationship to be what I thought they needed me to be. I had no idea who I was, what I liked, what I was capable of or what I was passionate about. And truthfully, in those days, none of it mattered.
For generations, we have raised our little girls to be submissive and behave in such a way that a man will scoop her up and marry her. She was taught how to maintain a home, raise babies & fall in line. Strong willed women were shamed for having opinions. This has got to come to a end!!!
One Simple 4-Letter Word
It should never have been about waiting for someone to love you, it should be about finding love of self. If you don’t love you, how can you expect anyone else to love you?
Without self-love, self-acceptance, self-awareness or self-esteem there is a much greater chance of falling into an abusive or at least, a dysfunctional relationship.
You marry at your level of self-esteemVirginia Satir
That quote completely explains my first 3 relationships. I had no self-esteem and therefore neither did my chosen partners. Their lack of self-esteem presented in abusive, narcissistic behaviors. My lack of self-esteem presented in self-destructive behaviors. Together, we were toxic AF!
It all starts with Self-love
I don’t care if you do the baby before marriage, never do marriage or never do baby, BUT I beg of you to find LOVE! Learn to love yourself. Learn to accept who you are. Forgive yourself for the mistakes you have made. Discover what makes you tick, lights your fire – makes you want to jump out of bed in the morning. Understand your Core Values & Beliefs. Set boundaries for how you expect to be treated & stand firm within them. Be both honest & accountable – self-awareness will take you anywhere you want to go!!
Be strong in your sense of self. Have the courage to walk away from anything that does not bring you joy. Self-love is the foundation of any relationship and the only way to have a successful parenting experience.
Here’s my take-away,
Regardless of your past, your upbringing or your choices; you have the power to create the life you deserve to live! Go back to the core of YOU and love you the way you wish others would love you and they WILL! It all begins & ends with self-love!! Once you find that, the rest will all fall into place!! It did for me.
Once I took the time to really, truly & deeply discover who I was, what I stood for and what I would not longer tolerate, I was able to have an honest, deeply fulfilling relationship with another person. He shares my values and beliefs. together, we can do anything because we choose to walk through life together.
Oh, and my daughters? They are both in strong, healthy relationships, not only with themselves, but each other and their respective partners!! It truly is a beautiful thing. 🙂