The Map of Self-Love
It took me a series of breakdowns and spiraling moments to recognize that my body is not the one whose broken and needs fixing — it’s this spiteful world that does.
I wish I can say that navigating the ropes of self-love and self-fulfillment wouldn’t hurt. That there wouldn’t be nights with soaking wet pillows and mornings without light. That there wouldn’t be days of staring tiredly at yourself in the mirror with streamlined tears before you can finally put on some clothes. That it wouldn’t mean rejecting to get your pictures taken because you wouldn’t like what you’d see. That it wouldn’t consist of self-betrayal and recurring limiting beliefs. That it wouldn’t result in hatred to the world for how it has become — making you question your worth and your very being.
I wish I can say that the map of self-love is as flowery as it sounds. But I’m afraid that it’s not.
But you can trust me that it does get better. The pain will subside, the waters will calm down, the cracks will soon have light peeking through them, the voices in your head will no longer be against you, and everything will peacefully settle in. Love will flow — tracing all the inches of your curves you used to hate and filling all the scars you used to hide. Love will flow until all there’s left to do is show yourself to the world because you’ve realized there’s no point in shrinking something so beautiful and whole. That there’s no point in shrinking all that you are.
Whatever society may claim about you, know that you always have the choice to step-out and change the narrative. To retrieve from the war with your own self. To step-out from the people-pleasing and self-restraining acts. Start internalizing a life that is self-sustaining — a life that needs no external gratification and validation in order to thrive.
Up to this point, I’m not sure if I’m ready to share these photographs and my vulnerability to the world. But like what Robin Sharma said in one of his books, “walking into the very things that scare you is how you reclaim your forgotten power.”
So if this ends up getting posted and you see this in your feed, know that I’ve finally decided I’m not playing small. I’m celebrating my body, my being, and my forgotten power of self-love.