March 30, 2017

Reasons to Smile

Two years ago timehop showed me a now 7-year-old tweet that said, "I love me some me" which felt like a message from the universe because I was having a horrible day and finding it very hard to love any aspect of myself. I tried to get myself together by writing about it and trying to feel beautiful. I spent some time reflecting on one of my favorite quotes from Nayyirah Waheed, "I have always been the women of my dreams." That day, despite heartache, I tried to reaffirm my commitment to loving myself fiercely and continuously, to the best of my ability.

The now 7-year-old tweet and accompanying 2-year-old selfie.

Rereading my post from my re-commitment to self love 2 years ago, what really stands out to me is "to the best of my ability." This journey of self love was not linear before this day two years ago and has not been linear since. It's an up and down and sometimes wobbly journey that confuses me but teaches me so much, especially in the last year or so.

I think that one of the more major things that I've noticed distracts from my ability to love myself has been my failure to focus on the good and comparing myself to others or, more dangerously, some idealized vision of myself.  There are so many times when instead of celebrating my success or living in what is good and happening in the moment. I graduated last December and earned my Master of Social Work with a 3.75. Almost 4 months later and I can admit to myself that I actually did really well my final semester an overall. Immediately after finals week, however, I was distraught over my grade on one paper that  I worked really hard on but didn't get the A that I wanted, that I just knew I was going to get after pouring so much of myself into that paper because I saw myself getting a 4.0 that semester. I kept thinking of all the people who don't procrastinate or don't have anxiety attacks over one final paper. That alone made it even harder to work on this one assignment. I spent so much energy on being upset with that one paper and focusing on alternate world 4.0 Kiyanna instead of my current life that I forgot to really celebrate all of this moment. This achievement is my own and although there are many people who have done better and have higher grades, I still deserve to give myself time to be in the moment and celebrate it.

Another big distraction has been running and staying in spaces and energies that make me feel unworthy. Realizing this has been leading me to paying more attention to how I'm feeling around certain people and in different situations. It led me to my 24th year birthday affirmation, "I am deserving." It's been helping me listen to myself and trust my intuitions more. Most importantly, I think that it has helped me question my experiences more. I've been thinking more about what lessons I'm learning from past and present experiences and relationships. I've been been journaling and reflecting more and really just learning so much about myself. Protecting my mental health and my emotional well being are on the top of my priority list and it's been working really well for me these past few weeks.

It's not a perfect journey and I don't think its ever meant to be but I'm really glad to be working on loving myself continuously.  I'm really glad I'm alive to experience the ups and downs of this journey. I love learning about myself and how to better love myself. I love me some me.

ps. if you read all of this, pray for me during this job search!

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