For the past few months I’ve been working hard at speaking to myself in a more kind and loving way and having a more positive view of myself. It hasn’t been easy. Society drills it into us from day one that we are never good enough, never deserving enough. So undoing 33 years of that message is going to take time, but I am committed.
When I celebrated my birthday last week I decided that a good exercise in self-love might be to write myself a love letter. Just like I would write a gushing birthday card to Mr or my bff or my sister, I would write one to myself! Praise and love for any of my friends or family comes easily for me and I hoped this would help it come more easily when speaking to or about myself.
I wasn’t sure if I wanted to share it in case it came off as braggy or conceited. But I realized that it would only come off that way because we are all trained to think that if anyone says anything kind about themselves that they are self-centered, conceited, egotistical, or selfish. I want that perception to change so that we all become more comfortable practicing self-love rather than self-deprecation. And I thought if I could inspire another woman to begin speaking to herself kindly and to love herself by my example, then I should share my letter! So here it is!
Today is your favorite holiday of the year! Happy Birthday!! This year I wanted to do something I have never done before: write you a love letter. So here you go!
Boo, you are the only person who has been with me through, quite literally, every single moment of my life and I have not treated you with the respect and caring that you very much deserve. So finally, after 33 years together, I want to tell you that I love you very much. I am so grateful that you’ve shown up for me every single day, no questions asked, no matter how horribly I treated or talked to you the day before. And I want you to know how proud I am to be you.
Cause let’s be honest, our life has been pretty incredible and there is so much to be grateful for and proud of! We had that crazy trip together down the birth canal, we’ve made ourselves laugh till our face hurt, we’ve chased so many dreams, we’ve started companies, we’ve napped (my god how we have napped), we’ve sang and danced, we’ve fallen in love, we’ve lived in many places, we’ve thrown some epic parties, and now we are traveling the world! Seriously, it has been totally kick-ass!
And I know what you’re thinking: it hasn’t all been confetti cake and purple tulips. We have handled situations totally inappropriately and sometimes very unkindly. There has been sadness, anger, confusion, and hurt sprinkled in with the happiness. I’ll be the first to admit that sometimes life has looked a helluva lot more like a champagne glass half empty. But you’ve never shied away from the hurt or sadness and you’ve always reached out to someone when you needed help. I love that about you. I also admire that you’ve never pretended life was perfect and that you’ve always strived to do better, treat people better and build positive memories on top of the negative ones. It’s time that I gave you more credit for your strength and resilience.
The next 33 years are not for beating yourself up for the past. No, they are for accepting you did the best you could with the knowledge you had at the time. They are for truly knowing that you will do better in the future. They are for more laughing, more growing, more tears, more love, more happiness, more dreams and more adventures. They are for smiling at strangers and helping anyone who needs it. They are for treating those you love better than you did the day before. And they are for loving, accepting and showing gratitude to yourself every day with no conditions.
Sounds like a lot, I know. But good news! You don’t have to do it alone. I’m here. :) And to help you achieve all that (and more!), I promise to tell you I love you everyday. I promise to only speak about you and your body with kind words. I promise to meditate every day to keep your mind healthy and free from anxieties. I promise to eat foods that provide nourishment and energy but I also promise to indulge in french fries (or sprinkled donuts or Cool Ranch Doritos or ice cream or Mexican food or Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups) when you need a treat. I promise to move and be active everyday so that your body can continue to provide the vibrant, kick-ass life you’ve been living and will continue to live. And I promise to thank you every day for this life you continue to give me.
So cheers and happy happy birthday Sonja Begonia! I am so lucky to have you.
Love, always and forever,