• Desha

There Was a Time...

When I can honestly tell you that I hated myself. They say to let go of resentments and such, and I've come to realize, that- that includes resentments against yourself. Criticized from a young age, from the time I can remember, it became a part of me. I didn't even realize it. It became my "normal", to think and say things about myself, and to view myself the way I did- including continually putting myself down- whether out loud, or to myself. I hated who I was; I hated who I wasn't. I hated what I would say or didn't say. I hated how I looked. I couldn't do anything right. I was never good enough. I became hard on myself, and became somewhat of a perfectionist. It amplified when the criticizing started in school as I got a bit older, especially when I gained weight. I was never comfortable in my own skin. I did have moments of it, but they didn't last, and were fleeting. I loved when a teacher, or a caring adult, would just be nice to me and kind of take me under his or her wing, even if only for a few minutes. I learned how to not express myself, or when I did, it wasn't in a good way. I learned to smile when I didn't want to. I learned to suck up a lot of things, when I was ripped up on the inside. I basked in self-pity, and self-loathing, brought on by circumstances; by people, and by the world. When you're young, you don't realize how much these things affect you, and then it becomes a part of you, and who you are. I do believe these things aided me in going down the path of alcoholism and addiction. They were some of the symptoms that came as a result of how I felt about myself. It was a way to cope, and feel "normal" to a degree, and to maybe even fit in, in some way. This is all still a part of who I am today, but it doesn't have control over me, as it once did. Now it's the other way around. I have learned to love and embrace my life- faults, and all. I have my moments where I hate some things about myself, and still find myself fighting it, but what a relief to recognize it, now, and to be able to let it go. It took a long time for me to get that way, so it also takes time to recognize and to re-learn a different way of thinking. Continual transforming of the mind. Renewal, daily. It's amazing how things can change when we allow it, and put forth some effort. I have realized that when I hate myself, or criticize myself, I'm criticizing God's creation. We are fearfully and wonderfully made. Who am I to say otherwise? I can't give away love for another, if I don't love myself. We don't have to like actions, but we can still love the person as God would love them. That includes ourselves. Hate the addiction, not the addict. Hate the words, not necessarily the person. Hate the sin, not the sinner. We all have faults. If we hate a person- including ourselves, we will show hate. And hurting people, hurt people. When I feel myself becoming critical of another, it's usually because I'm being critical of myself. It's a sign that I need to get back on track. It's so wondeful to recognize it, and put a stop to it. As mentioned, there are still times that I dislike things about myself, but I can still love myself as a person and as God's creation, and work on these things that pop up, and allow God to work on them, too. It's a healthy balance that I continue for which to strive. I cannot believe the difference I see from where I was a few years ago, to today. If you told me eight years ago, that I'd have the life that I do, today, I may have looked at you like a deer in headlights, but part of me would want to believe you. And I thank God, for not giving up on me. He never does. Even today. Bella is out. I am beat. What a great week, even with a sinus infection. Thank You, for it all. Sunrise at Lighthouse Beach in Chatham, MA Feel free to contact me for prints or for use of the photo. Feel free to share. Enjoy!

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