this is where I get to stay for my 30th birthday :)Seeing as I'm almost 30 and not currently in a relationship, I've been thinking a lot lately about what it means to be in a relationship with myself. I posted a while back about discovering this fascinating idea and I think it translates to not just the things you do for another person in a relationship, but the kind of person you are. Are you supportive, are you honest, are you giving?
I would say I'm all of these things, but sometimes the honesty part is a problem. I'm a girl some people might refer to as someone with "daddy issues." Honesty with men has always been an issue for me, especially when it comes to asking for what I want and what I need. The last time I was actually in a relationship I genuinely didn't know what those things were for me yet.
And that brings me to being in a relationship with me. It's about figuring those things out: what I want and what I need. Learning that I'm allowed to want and need things makes it easier to ask for them, and I think I'm coming to a more mature, realistic place about this in my life right now.
In the meantime, I've started making a list of the things I do for my other half when I'm in a relationship, and I'm trying to think of how I can do those things for myself. And I'm not just talking about buying myself flowers, and letting myself off the hook when I eat too much junk food over the weekend. Here are some of the major things I've thought of so far:
1. Believing in myself. Why in the world is it so easy to believe in others, but not ourselves? I always believe the best in people, but never myself. I think it's best to start out small with this one. I'm trying to simply do away with even thinking the words "that will never happen" or "that's not possible" or "I can't do that."
2. Being supportive. This kind of goes with the one above, but support and faith are two different things (though they definitely go hand in hand). The actual definition of support (for our purposes here) is to give aid or courage to, to give approval to, to give strength to; maintain.
3. Being unconditional. Loving someone unconditionally means loving them for who they are, good or bad. You love them even when they make mistakes, and then you love them even more when they do the right thing. I think I've become a master at beating myself up whenever I'm not my own definition of "perfect." No one is perfect. And life is messy. That's where all the beauty comes from. (I mean, come on. Do you really think a painter walks away from a masterpiece without getting one speck of paint anywhere but the canvas?)
4. Small acts of love. Here's where I bring you back to the flowers. It's in the small things. And not just material things, but also hugs and kisses and compliments. I obviously can't give myself hugs, but I can ask for them when I need them, which could also mean doing something for someone else at the same time. You give a friend a hug and so you get a hug in return. Have you ever noticed how uplifting it feels to give someone a compliment? Doing something good for someone else means opening yourself up to receiving something good back. (So don't ever think that looking in the mirror and telling yourself you look fabulous is a bad idea.)
5. Trust. I suppose this is an extension of number 1, but it had to be said. Trust can take time, but we learn it from experience. To be able to trust in yourself, to know exactly what your capable of is a monumentous thing. To no longer fear that anything or anyone could ever keep you from being the person you are meant to be; no one can take that from you. That, I think in essence, is what I'm striving for in this life, in this relationship with myself: trust. No fear of living a messy, fulfilling life.
6. And last, but not least, Honesty. All I have to say is, if you can't be honest with yourself, how can you be honest with anyone else?