Updated: Sep 23
Story By: Sirjan Walia
It all started one and a half years ago, when I visited a therapist for the first time. My mental health had been deteriorating at a rapid pace. Anxiety was turning into my new best friend and anxiety attacks into companions. I was experiencing symptoms of borderline bulimia and had began cutting myself. I had visited a couple of therapists earlier and I always came back home with a new label given to my condition.
I had heard a lot of notions when it came to loving yourself or "self love". Self love, I always thought was something very admirable and lovely to look at as a concept but not something which was meant for me, for it was way beyond my emotional capability. I had hit a new rock bottom to not liking myself wherein I couldn't even look at myself in the mirror sometimes. That's when the real journey began.
Six months into therapy, I went through some major life changes. I began accepting my insecurities towards the relationship with people in my life. I accepted my hypocrisy and my constant denial towards my problems. I accepted my naivete and the baggage of hatred from people and I let it go.
It took a lot of therapy and poetry to finally be where I am today but I believe the major notion that helped me love myself was acceptance. I began accepting the good and the bad. I talked a lot to my therapist, I wrote about it, painted, practiced mindfulness and much more. After acceptance came the good and the bad. I realised that when it would come to anything bad around me, I would zoom it to 10 times it's intensity; and the good ? I would usually just let it pass by. I also started practicing mindfulness at least once every day. I started finding escapes which were healthy for me - painting, writing, etc.
Loving yourself is a long journey and I have a long long way to go. I never really had someone to tell me anything about self care or self love when I was lost and clueless. Even right now I can't explain how one can love themselves in four hundred words but it starts with taking that one step forward towards yourself.