On self-love

Today I am sharing something I wrote a while back and published on Instagram on the day of my birthday. Now almost 6 months later it couldn’t be more true. So here it is again for you to read.

“For once something not food related and pretty personal. I am sharing a big part of my story with you and what better picture is there other than my naked butt to show you? Let me just say things the way they are and get straight to the point: it took me 29 years to the day to come to terms with being myself.

Not once in my life did I truly and honestly love and accept myself. There was always something to be upset about, or at least I was sure that things could be better or just different. I often felt strange and misunderstood. I felt different. And I still do.

I often beat myself up for being different. I wanted to fit in. I wanted to be like everybody else. But I just didn’t fit in most of the time and kept quiet. I tried to please everyone and meet the expectations of those around me.

The list of things that made and make me different and strange to other people is endless. I like being alone most of the time and I am not very social. I am sarcastic. I don’t eat meat. I don’t drink alcohol. I am very health conscious. I prefer a workout over a night out. I don’t want any children. I don’t ever want to marry. I don’t want to buy a house and settle. I make people uncomfortable, when I ask for tap water in the restaurant or mention that I am vegan. People find me dark and downbeat. I am pretty straightforward and unapologetic, which intimidates most folks. I pick up fights. I never put too much effort into my looks. I am moody and loud. I am unforgiving. And I am sure as hell not quiet (anymore) when it comes to expressing my opinion and stand my ground.

People often gave me (and still do) strange looks for my mindset or behavior. And it broke my heart many many times. I often felt guilty for being different and I made myself small. But I realized that there is always something for people to be upset about and to argue on, no matter if good or bad. Potatoes gonna potate, right?

What most people don’t see is that I am also passionate. I am ambitious. I am compassionate. I am a dreamer. I am an observer. I am artistic. I am delicate. I am sensitive. And I am vulnerable.

How many friendsplaining conversations did I have in the last years? I honestly lost count…I was told that I was being silly, naive, unrealistic… some were even offended by my mindset, decisions and behavior. Most people however, I believe, did not have my best interest in mind, but were more concerned about what made them feel better about themselves. I will never understand why people cannot accept other people’s paths and decisions. If you’re being too unconventional, you’re being strange. Wow. But, who are they to judge? In the end it is just going to be you, and you alone have to put up with yourself no matter what other people might say. So I learned to not give a fuck over the years. I said no more often, left people behind and looked after myself.

Only now I begin to understand that all of these things are what are making me me. I begin to love and embrace the strong, free-spirited and independent woman that I have become.

Only now I understand that the judgment of other people says more about them than it does about me.

The times of constant hiding are over. No more hiding. Normal is what most people do. And well, I’m not most people. I found what makes me happy. I enjoy living a minimalsitic nomad lifestyle. Just my backpack, my bike, all the fruits the tropics can offer and like-minded people around me. It really is that simple to satisfy me.

If this offends you, please be my guest and join another party.

Girls, please take note and just be your fucking fabulous self.”

I always shielded myself from exposing my deepest feelings, fears and anxieties and I tried so hard to please others and meet their expectations instead of spilling my heart out. I was always the nice girl, never saying mean things, just what other people wanted to hear. I wanted to break out of this cycle so bad, but in order to do so, I had to do the single most painful and demanding thing I have ever done: facing my true self and accept and love myself for all that I am. I needed to learn to stand up for myself. To defend my ground. And I did. And I couldn’t be more proud of myself. I knew I was holding back from being my true and authentic self out of fear what other people might think of me. But I it was time to elevate above other people’s bullshit and start focusing on myself, learn to choose myself over everything else over and over again. And man, have I grown.

So here I am now, living my dream of independence and freedom here in Chiang Mai, surrounded by the most lovely and caring community. I feel blessed. And I feel fucking proud that I had the strength to break free from all that was holding me back.

Elo

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