My search for love last year inadvertently sent me on a mission to turn my search inward to discover my own self. It allowed me to return to love, because I have come to understand that we cannot truly love others in the way they deserve to be loved until we fully love ourselves.
My journey to find love truly became a journey to find myself, and the love I held in my heart all along. By choosing to give my heart to others and find that sense of love and worth through them, I was robbing myself of the Divine gift of self love (and simultaneously removing the chance for my beloved to be truly loved unconditionally).
Six months after choosing to date myself, I found something I didn’t expect to uncover: a deep, sustainable and all consuming self love. What started as a chance to better myself through reflection, introspection and self care in order to attract a better match, ended up being vastly superior to any relationship I could have forced prematurely.
How ironic that my motive for bettering myself be to attract a higher love? How absolutely silly that in order to find and sustain an unbreakable love for myself, I had to first search for, find and then lose several great loves (two to be exact). But that is how my self-love cookie crumbled.
In our society, many women are not shown great examples of strong women with high self worth. I know I was not always shown that. And right away, before we put any kind of thought into it, we quickly jump on the bandwagon to find and secure a loving partner (often before we love ourselves, let alone even understand what real love is).
And before we know it, our sense of worth comes from our parents, partners, careers and children, rather than from a sustainable source within (a higher power if you will).
After I sewed the pieces of my heart together after failing to find my sense of worth outside of myself, I finally stumbled upon a true and lasting form of love (albeit while preparing for a new kind of love, right in very own whole heart).
So, while I find hindsight to be wildly entertaining, it doesn’t matter why I began this search, so long as I found the right destination. And I couldn’t have ever prepared myself for my new reality, because I never knew it was possible; I didn’t know a self love so rich and satisfying was attainable.
I see why I couldn’t love myself with absolute clarity today: I didn’t know God like I know God today; the love that God possesses and shines down on each and everyone of us, now resides right in my heart.
That love now understands life and death and Heaven and Earth as if we’re all interconnected, because we are. The oneness I feel and know to be true never has to search outside myself for love, because I am love. We all are at the core, yet most of us are detached in some form from our most sustainable source of life—a connection to Spirit.
My goal to return to love via a romantic partnership ended up serving me the most sacred gift: myself. A big, fat platter of exuberant self love, self worth and connection to Spirit. And the authentic expression of myself that is made possible from this place of Divine Love is endless, infinite and supremely satisfying.
What Self Love Taught Me
I learned that before I can create a spiritual partnership on Earth, I had to create that partnership with Spirit in my own heart.
I learned that returning to love in my own heart is the only way to return to a deeply moving love with another in the way they are meant to be loved.
I learned that by seeking love outside myself in any form other than a Spiritual source, I was merely looking to fill the void that only God can sustain through the acceptance of that love within myself.
I learned that my failed attempts to love others with all of my heart were noble yet doomed to fail when I didn’t posses self love in the first place.
I learned you cannot give what you don’t already posses.
I learned that while I loved those souls to the best of my ability, they ultimately deserved to be loved so much more.
I learned that my desire to please, help or fix others was truly a distraction from the void I longed to fill in my own heart, for it filled up my own self worth cup while belittling those I attempted to fix and allowing them to feel anything but my unconditional love.
I learned that there is a better way, that there is a higher love, and it begins with me.
I learned that giving love is a Divine gift, but receiving it is a privilege we should never take for granted, because that love can be taken away in a flash.
To My Former Loves
To all those I loved with less than you deserved, I am sorry. I loved you with all of my heart yet that was not enough (not even for me).
I did the best I could; please know my intentions were of the purest form. I simply fell short of those intentions when I failed to love myself first.
I know better now. And when you know better, you do better; it is my vow to do better.
It will not be with you, but that is ok. You taught me lessons that are invaluably appreciated and for that, I am forever grateful for you and for the love you gifted me; it led to the best gift of all which is nothing short of a miracle.
So I thank you from the bottom of my full heart.
A Letter to My Future Love
And to the one I will love one day and share the gift of both giving and receiving of a spiritual love, I feel I know you already, yet I haven’t met you.
I haven’t been graced by your presence, although I feel the love you will one day lay on my heart and change my life with.
I, too, hope to change your life with a love so deep and moving that you are never again the same.
I thank you for allowing me the Divine opportunity to give of myself and of my heart in the way I always intended to, but could not until now.
Allow me to spend the rest of my days showing you the gratitude in my very whole heart.
The Story Has Just Begun
So, there you have it. My story is far from over, and yet it is just beginning, too. All because I chose to be the best version of myself, because that is what I deserve to experience and that is who anyone else deserves to know.
I ask you then, what is keeping you from being the best you can be? If at the very least, do it for the ones you love (if not for yourself). They deserve to experience your best self; they deserve your unconditional love.
And above all else, you deserve to unconditionally love yourself. Life is too grandiose, too temporary, to be anything else than love, to have anything less than the gift of love and to experience anything short of extraordinary, life changing love.
I close with this sentiment: my dating sabbatical is over. Caput. Done. I’m putting my very open heart out there to be seen, felt and experienced. While I have adored this journey to find (self) love, I am ready to give of myself and to receive that gift from another.