For the Love of Me!
Guest Contributor: Sonya Barnes
It’s officially the month of LOVE! So many emotions and feelings come with this “man-made” holiday as many refer to. Regardless of its origin, Valentine’s Day for many brings with it a kaleidoscope of emotions, expectations, and yes even disappointments. As I reflect on the pressure this day can mean to many, I wonder where it all began that made Valentine’s Day a special day for lovers to express their feelings for one another with candy, flowers, and even wedding proposals!
For me it started early when I would make a Valentine’s Day card for everyone in the classroom. And, if you had your eye on a special someone, you would send a special note to “Would You Be My Valentine?” check the box: yes or no.
Fast forward to the fairytale of love ever after, til death do us part and finally, you have found the cupid of your dreams. Let’s face it; the Golden Books were fantasy. In reality, they should have groomed us from an early age that the best love is the love and acceptance we give ourselves.
Think about it, had the Golden Books talked about how wonderful we were and how beautiful and flawless was our skin, our glowing personality; and that every Prince Charming was someone that was a choice and a joy to our lives; the trajectory of our expectations would definitely be different.
Over the years, I’ve had every emotion attached to this holiday. But here’s the deal. For every thing or every holiday, we give meaning to it. It’s not something we made up: it’s something that simply is. We make up stories in our head about “should”, “would”, maybe?”, “what if?”. Stop it! It’s February 14th. That is the fact.
This year, I encourage you to become completely selfish. Yes, I said it. I challenge you to practice radical self-love. Meaning, praise yourself for all your attributes and gifts and talents that you bring to the world.
Do what you would have wanted, or expected to receive from others to yourself. Let’s face it, you are with you 24/7, 365 days a year! You know you. I always say the best gifts are the “to me, for me, by me” gifts. Fail-proof.
This month of love you have 2 choices: 1) mourn and weep over the loss of your expectations or your perceived loss, or 2) develop a new celebration; party of one, or two. Become intimate with who you are as a woman.
Here are some of my suggestions:
- Write yourself a love letter. Pour your feelings about how you miss and and long for you. And how you can’t wait to discover and be with yourself again. A real love letter. I challenge you to not use an electronic device, but real stationary. Write it out, and put it in the mail and feel the excitement of receiving it.
- Get in the habit of buying yourself real flowers. Weekly, monthly, or whatever suits you. But this month go all out! If roses are your jam, go for it. Otherwise, choose the flowers of your choice. Order early, and anticipate the delivery.
- Chocolates, candy, or any other decadent indulgence you want; devour it. Life’s too short. And let’s not forget the champagne!
- Lingerie, seriously? It’s all about loungewear! Splurge on comfort and feeling sumptuous in your skin versus enticing for the pleasure of anyone but yourself. It’s all about you. It always has been.
- The pandemic may have dampened many dinner plans, but here’s the thing; a food service or local restaurant can deliver you the entire experience. Dinner for one? Of course.
Remember, anything we desire or aspire to is based on a feeling we’re yearning for. It’s all an expectation of how we want to feel or how we think we wil be once we receive or achieve it.
The last 20 lbs, the new love of our life, etc. There’s an inside secret. We can feel that feeling right now. All we have to do is decide that’s how we want to feel. No one or no thing other than Christ or your other higher power can give you the unconditional love you so yearn. When we stop looking for love in validations from others, or gifts to affirm our worthiness, we allow ourselves to joyfully receive with genuine gratitude.
Here are a few gift ideas you can give yourself this Valentine’s Day!
For those who love the classic, traditional gifts, you’ll enjoy the gift of receiving what I refer to as my “to me for me” gifts. Monthly subscriptions have changed our lives and made it that much more convenient for us to save time while gifting ourselves monthly with these simple luxuries. The bonus of these subscriptions is that if you need an unexpected gift for someone or a hostess gift, these make for a fine presenation.
Beauty & Fragrance
These are great considerations to add impact to your signature style. A red or pink lip, a signature nail color, or fragrance are simple indulgences that never changes size, no matter how much sugar or carbs you consume.
It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere!
If you enjoy your libations, treat them as a special affair. Stemware, barware to compliment your beverage of choice makes everything taste that much more decadent.
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