Sunday, July 25, 2010

Learning to Love Myself

I’ve spent a great deal of time this month in deep reflection.  I mean DEEP, DEEP, Soul-Searching Reflection, where you hold a gi-normous magnifying glass to your soul and life (Past, Present & Future).  I think the one year UnBloggable Anniversary had something to do with it.   Nothing like an ongoing UnBloggable to turn you upside down and force you to refocus your priorities.   There are many other reasons why.  This POST by Daring Young Mom knocked me off my feet earlier this summer as well.  It’s a must read!!!

Summer 416

Like many I’ve struggled with self-esteem my entire life.  And I’m now seeing how the negative comments I make about my body, intellect, etc, are effecting the way my children view themselves.  How stupid is it that a 4 and 8 year old make remarks about themselves being stupid or fat?  Of course, I immediately sit them down, tell them how precious they are, remind them not to compare themselves to others, yada, yada, yada.  But, the only way for them to really believe me is if I stop the Self-Hate Myself.

I’m working on it.  Really Hard.  Don’t really want to be that kind of hypocrite mom.

And it’s working.

Slowly, but it’s working.

My long time readers know I rarely post pictures of myself.  You know the typical ‘You’ll break the camera, cause I’m ugly thought & excuse.’  But I decided to take off my mask.  Got a little courage from SHAKTI MAMA’s Project located HERE.  I hid way too long behind what I thought others thought of me.  Bought clothes, furniture, and STUFF because I thought other’s would think it was nice and not necessarily because I loved it. 

Well this year I turned the scary Big 40.  You know Mid-Life Crisis Warning time.  Of course I didn’t go out and jump out of an airplane, or buy a Motorcycle (even thought I thought about it).  Wanted a little red one that I could call Bella.  Silly right!  UGH!

The best thing about turning 40 – Reflection. 

Now, I’m finally taking steps to embrace me, my thoughts, dreams, goals, likes, etc,   And the most amazing thing is happening --- I’m starting to like me.  No, it’s even stronger than that.

I actually Love me, myself, and I.  Shucks, it only took 40 years, but I’m viewing myself through more mature, enlightened eyes.

Shakti’s first project was a making a mask, but seeing as I’ve been behind one way too long I thought I’d show you the real thing.  No make-up, no photo editing, and no broken camera.

Introducing me.

Summer 437

Freckles, sun-spots, moles and all.  And it’s not that bad, if I do say so myself. 

Yes, I know I won’t grace the cover of any magazine but I am a masterpiece in progress.  Want to see something I really like about myself.

Summer 420

I’ve got a head full of super thick, slightly wavy (when still damp like above) wonderful long hair.  I mostly keep it in a pony tail or braid because I don’t like it in my face.  But I think it’s pretty cool, even now that it has a sprinkling of gray in there.  Gray = Life Experience.  Let’s just say I’ve gotten more life experience over the past year than I have the previous 39 put together. 

And here’s something I wear to help me to remember to keep my dreams alive.

Summer 427

It’s actually a combination of three of my favorite necklaces.  My dream necklace that my in-laws gave me for last Christmas along with a little fairy for imagination and a flower bell that really tinkles a charming note reminding me that to find happiness I’ve got to seek it out.  It sure won’t come and find me if I’m wallowing in self-pity. 

You know, my girls, they are going to make it too.  We all are.

How do we break the self-hate cycle once and for all?  It’s probably different for all of us.  Would love your suggestions because I know for a fact it’s a process that won’t happen overnight.  But it will be so worth it in the end.

24 comments:

SilverNikNats said...

What a fantastic blog very inspiring! Your are beautiful and I have to say I LOVE your hair! Thanks for sharring x

Kelly said...

Hon you have to read the post I made last May...you can find it here:

http://blondheart.blogspot.com/2010/05/thank-you-oprah-winfrey.html

Hopefully it will help you with your perspective on yourself!

Hugs, Kelly

Sara said...

Yes, you have beautiful hair, but you have a beautiful face, too! I love the eyes and the smile and even the freckles! Of course, it's what is inside that counts, and I'm pretty sure that's even more beautiful. You've got to get the new Veggie Tales movie August 3. ;-)

Did you see the viral video about little Jessica affirming herself? It's wonderful and I've been trying to start my days like that. Positive self-talk. Don't talk to yourself the way you wouldn't talk to your kids!

Heather said...

This was a really lovely post... as someone who has been told they are ugly and feels that way almost all of the time... I appreciate the post and its message.

And, btw, you are beautiful... and your hair is awesome!

Richins Family said...

Fawndear,
I almost had to cry when you said you didn't like yourself. You are a beautiful woman. I think one of the things that helps with self esteem is to focus on the positives. Make a list of all the things that make YOU special, your talents, strengths, likes. We are all different, and those differences make us beautiful. Keep up the positive self talk. It is amazing how the kids pick up on all the negatives.

I think you are super talented. I have always wished to have been sprinkled with a little of your creativity and imagination. You are amazing and beautiful and a Wonderful Sister. You have touched my life in numerous ways and helped me in so many ways. I love you.

utmomof 5 said...

Your beautiful. Don't let anyone tell you different (even yourself!).


PS Your hair is awesome :)

jen said...

Isn't it funny sometimes that it can take us so many years to see the things that others have already seen? You are beautiful!

Trena Doll said...

hey lovely,
stay strong...you're doing great!
xoxo

imaginationlane said...

Such a beautiful post! Please know you are not the only one who struggles. I've learned that a good many of us were told,(often), that we were plain, and were shown that nothing we did was good enough. I can tell you from the experience of years that time does help, and that we only get better with each birthday!

Those are beautiful photos of you..amazing hair, and I love how you combined necklaces. So glad you shared your thoughts with us...

Lynette

The Littlest Thistle said...

Nice to 'meet' you, glad you have learend to start loving yourself, you are a warm, obviously loving, and beautiful person.

I'd love to say this is something I've been able to embrace, but not yet, maybe one day.

The Trio said...

You are beautiful inside and out! You are one I look up to besides my dear sister Kirsten. You are an inspiration to many. I too, know about the negative self-viewing. You are stronger that you think you are and give your children hopes/dreams as well as foundations for life.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Dang. You are gorgeous.
And frankly, the best way to start loving yourself is to toss the catalogs and magazines and ignore the image "sold" to us. Well, that and God's grace, of course!

Alisa said...

Good for you for making the change, as well as, putting it out there this way!

And you have GORGEOUS hair, by the way!!

laterg8r said...

love your hair and your freckles :D

surround yourself with super positive people, it helps :D

Stacy (Mama-Om) said...

Oh, I just loved seeing you looking into the camera. There is something so breathtaking to me about the self-portraits I am seeing. It is different, the gaze showing SELF to the WORLD.

Thank you!

Blessings to you on your journey,
Stacy

LissyLou said...

look at your lovely long hair...you have a pretty smile and friendly eyes too hun. that necklace is fab xxxxx

Tara said...

FawnDear,

Apparently this year is time for a lot of us to reflect and examine who we are and who we really want to be. I too am 40 as of December of 2009. I have had self-esteem issues, self-hatred and anger issues most of my life. I have also recently been thinking long and hard about how to get out of my "rut" and be happy. I am reading several books and it's a process. We have to literally reprogram our brains to stop criticizing ourselves and also stop listening to others who choose to do the same....it's so involved....it's seems so hard....I'm right there with you. I've just started with my blogs and there isn't anything on them yet. I'm hoping to start really having fun with them soon. If you are interested, I would be happy to give you the titles of some of the books I have been reading. They have been recommended by a wonderful Pagan friend of mine. She is wonderful, non-judgemental, and inspirational. Anyway...you are a beautiful woman. Never doubt that or yourself.
Tara

candyn said...

You are beautiful! I could always tell your inner self was a bastian of gorgeousness from your blog, and it is wonderful you showed us the package that wraps your lovely self. And you are an inspiration. I joined the challenge too as this is something that is so hard for me as well.

I love your hair. Will you keep it long as it goes gray? I am awed by women with long gray/white hair. It is so beautiful and too rare.

Juliana @ Shakti Mama said...

Fawndear, these are beautiful images of you. Your face is lovely and your eyes have a playful glint to them -- I love that!

I know precisely what you mean about breaking the cycle of self-hate, which I wrote about recently on my blog. We have been taught to do this, but I really believe we can learn new ways. It begins with self-love, as you've pointed out from here, and from there you practice patience and kindness and compassion for the self, and openness too (I meditate on opening myself up like a flower). It'll come if you want it to.

Lovely, honest, real post. Thank you.

~Leslie said...

You're lovely!!
Nice to 'meet' you too. Thanks for the comment on my blog.
I don't have all the answers with regards to how to stop the cycle, but I think be living differently in front of your girls will help. I'm doing my best to do that with mine. When they ask me what I think about...or what others think about...I redirect them by asking, "what do you think?" and let them know that ultimately that's really the most important.

I'll be looking around here as your blog looks very interesting!

Marisa @ Getting Back To Basics said...

Love it all...your hair...your freckles...and your blog.

I've always had short hair until I was almost 50. Now it's past my shoulders and tinseled with grey and I like it even though most people think a woman my age should wear it shorter.

Karen said...

Fawn, You are wonderful. You are one of the people I would choose to be on a deserted island w/ me cause you are so inventive, capable, helpful, understanding and FUN! We'd survive and in style! I'm so glad you are loving yourself because everybody else already does...Love you.

Natalie said...

I wanted to say something, but it will sound so sappy I don't know if I should. Oh well, here goes...

Never call yourself fat or ugly or stupid, because none of the above are true. You are beautiful and smart, and anyway what matters is what's on the inside. I watched a show called True Beauty, where they take beautiful people and put them in a contest. This last season, the contestants thought they were competing to be the face of Vegas with challenges like who's the best tour guide, who comes up with with the best costume, or who makes the best commercial, while really the challenges were (tour guide) who would change their score, (best costume) who would steal if the stylist encouraged it, and (commercial) who would complain about the challange after partying all night and being exhausted the next day. I think you would like the show. It's really good.

Keep smiling,

Natalie

cking said...

Well Fawn, I think you are amazing. Like Sandy, I always wished I had more of your creativity...it's incredible. I wondered what your mid-life 40's crisis examples (jumping out of a plane and getting a motorcycle) say about me, b/c I have jumped out of a plane and am REALLY wanting to learn to ride a bike. (i've looked into classes and wondering if I want to spend the money) I must be starting my 'crisis' young:)