When I was on the path of recovery I was told to make a list of all the people who I thought had harmed me. I vigorously started writing. When I was asked to read it aloud, I was asked why I wasn’t on that list. I stopped and thought about that. I wanted to point the finger at everyone else for the pain and anger I felt, but when I thought about it honestly, no one had caused me more pain than myself, and I had a lot of anger toward myself for not being good enough, in my eyes, so why was I so quick to point the finger elsewhere? It was part of my sickness, that part that uses other things to distract me from what’s really going on. My disease wants to me think everyone else is to blame, because as long as I am pointing the finger outward I’m not going to look inward for a solution. On the flip-side, I also couldn’t focus on myself on that resentment list as a way to bash myself further. I had to find a way to use it to heal and to be accountable for my own actions.
I had always resented myself. In my eyes, I had always failed at being who I wanted to be or thought I should be. I never measured up in my eyes. I spent my life with almost unattainable expectations of myself and when I didn’t meet them I would mentally and verbally beat myself up. I not only resented myself, I hated myself for most of my life. But you would never know it. Outside of some self-deprecating comments, I put on a brave face and an air of “I’m fine,” while I was slowing rotting from the inside from my self-hatred. I talk about “my disease,” it wasn’t until I sought out help that I realized I had one, mental illness is cunning and it hid itself in my life from as far back as I can remember. Learning that I had an illness helped me to find some understanding, and eventually some acceptance and forgiveness for myself. It also helped me to find some new tools to live a life that I can be proud of, and one where I would take responsibility for my actions, instead of pointing my finger elsewhere. I don’t resent myself today, nor do I resent those other people who were on my list back then, because I know that for the most part, I played a part in those relationships, circumstances or altercations I was so upset about, and for those I had no part in, I could see that those people were, and are, fighting their own sicknesses and illnesses, and I can, today, find some compassion there, and in some cases, even relate to their struggle.
Beating ourselves up for past mistakes, or for being less than what we think we should be doesn’t make things any better, it never will, all it will do is keep us down, keep us sick, and keep us from reaching our full potential. Learning to love ourselves is the greatest gift we can offer to our heart and our spirit, finding those things we love about ourselves and celebrating that, not what we don’t like. Find more of what you do like, find the good in you and what makes you you, what makes you special, and you are special SLAYER, we all are in our own way, reach deep inside and find the light that is your special light and let it shine, not only out in the world to share with others, but shine it back at you and heal your hurt. SLAY on!
SLAY OF THE DAY: Do you resent yourself? If so, why? Do you have resentments towards others? Why? What, within those resentments, did you play a part in? If you had no part, can you identify the sickness in those people that may have caused them to act a certain way? Has an illness affected the way you’ve acted, is there something you’re struggling with and working to overcome? We all have our own battles SLAYER, it is important to love ourselves through our difficulties and also those around us, to find some understanding of what others may also be struggling with, and to not engage and put ourselves in situations that may harm us, or others, because it’s something we want or are trying to force into happening. Honor yourself, and those around you.
S – self L – love A – appreciate Y – you