i tend to be my most reflective self as my birthday draws near. with 31 being less than a week away, i’ve thought about what i want my theme or mantra for the year to be. each year, i choose a word. while i am fairly certain i have the word selected, i have been doing a lot of introspection. i have been paying close attention to how i treat myself during the good, the bad and the ugly moments. i had noticed a trend in those not so good moments – i wasn’t treating myself with kindness, grace or tenderness. i thought about where that stemmed from. this quote hit the nail on the head.
“there may have been a parent or adult in your life who withdrew love as a form of punishment. be aware of any way in which you withdraw love, presence, or connection from your own self. part of your healing is finding ways to do for yourself what another may not have been able to.” -vienna pharaon
listen. reading this gave me chills. then, i read it again. and again.
yes. i had multiple adults in my life growing up who loved me unconditionally. thank god for them. i also had a significant adult in my life who made it their job to withdraw love, affection and care as a form of punishment. i didn’t realize just how impactful that would be not just in my relationships with others, but in my relationship with myself. as an adult, i have definitely noticed instances where i called myself “holding myself accountable” when in reality, i was withdrawing love. even if i am holding myself accountable, the love i have for myself does not need to be lessened. i would even argue that when times are tough, i might need to rev up the love i typically show/give myself.
a huge part of my healing has been loving myself consistently. if you aren’t already on this train, hop on.