Today, I will share a blog post by Lindy Bruce, author of Motherhood and Me. It was originally posted on her website on July 20th, 2009:
Lindy Bruce – A Lesson in Self Love:
“Yesterday, I had one of those “overwhelmed” mother moments!
I was having a great morning until my husband mentioned that he thought the vegetable potjie I was serving to some friends for supper was not going to be enough… and that perhaps we should do some meat too!!!! It is always the smallest piece of straw that seems to break the camel’s back… and for me it was the MEAT!!!!
I was immediately engulfed by a thousand thoughts:
The house is in a mess.
I have so much work to catch up on.
I need to walk and feed the dogs!
I haven’t done photographs for five years.
I have no winter clothes to wear and when will I ever get to the shops.
The kids need new school shoes.
Damn… I need to pay the school fees.
Oh no… the meat!!!!!!!!!!!
I was in a downward spiral! There was a little voice in my head that said, “choose something different Lindy, you don’t need to spiral, just walk away from it all for a while”.
With that I stood up, announced I was going to shower and asked that Cam motivate the kids to make their beds and clean-up. I gave myself an extra long shower (sorry, to the environment); washed my hair; pondered over creams and smellies for a while; dried my hair and then got dressed. I was feeling a little better.
As I was walking out of my bedroom my eye caught a glimpse of a picture of me on our wall, age two. I took the picture off the wall and gazed at this beautiful little girl. I immediately saw traces of my own mother, and parts of me that resembled each one of my children. I became intimately aware of the strength of my blood and genetic connection to all these people that I love. I looked at myself a little longer and allowed the memory or association to my family to fade a little and all of a sudden I saw the face of me… just ME.
An unexpected thing happened… my heart filled to the size of the universe. I was floating in the most mesmerizing sensation of love. For whom? For ME!
My mind was flooded with new thoughts:
I love you.
You are doing a wonderful job with your children.
You have created a warm and happy home. Well done.
I am so proud of you for all the painful experiences you have come through and all the valuable lessons you have learned.
I admire the way you have embraced change.
You have grown up into a wonderful woman.
I love you.
I felt incredible, no longer over-whelmed, but just… incredible. I realized in that moment that there is nothing more powerful than the love and approval of one’s self.
In the modern world we can confuse this with arrogance. It is not arrogance. Self-love has the ability to celebrate all of you that deserves celebrating, but it also has the wisdom and humility to acknowledge where change and growth needs to happen, but even in this observation, love is present.
The problem is that we do not separate from our responsibilities as mothers and wives long enough, to see and experience ourselves simply as women: as that little girl who grew into a teenager and then into a young women with dreams and passions. We are still that person, but she so easily becomes lost and forgotten.
My wish for all mothers is that in the midst of the love and thanks and approval your loved ones will shower on you, you take the time to gaze at your own face and allow your heart to swell with love and approval for yourself and the amazing woman you are!”
Lindy Bruce, originally posted on her websiteon July 20th, 2009.