Who doesn’t want to fall in love? Who doesn’t want that fantasy love affair and undying honeymoon? I know I did, and for a while, I searched high and low for it. I can tell you that I closed a lot of doors and not because something was wrong with every one of the men I dated but because I wasn’t interested in something small that they did -it became annoying to me or I made BIG excuses for my boredom in each one of them.
While discussing my situation with friends, I soon started to hear the words, “You have to love yourself, before you can love another person.” I thought I loved myself, I felt I loved myself. I mean I didn’t hate myself or dislike anything about myself. I would hear it and think to myself that I knew I needed improvement but in what sense, because I thought I was pretty great.
After hearing it several times, I tried to assess what I was doing wrong in my dating patterns and looked at each person that I walked away from and disregarded. In my mind I thought, what was it that was so bad about that person? I mentally made lists and soon found out that they were very loving individuals, very appreciative, very supportive and the one thing that made me cringe was the large amount of compliments I was getting. It almost seemed unreal; I mean how can someone actually compliment another person that many times a day? Don’t get me wrong not everyone that I dated was so great. Some had huge unnecessary guidelines to follow to be in a relationship with them and for me it wasn’t worth it.
In assessing the individuals without issues and trying to understand where I went wrong, why I walked away and why I didn’t take that chance led me to realize it was something deep within me. I had to understand all of me, both the good and bad. I knew all of my bad habits and accepted them entirely for so long that I didn’t realize I had become sarcastically unemotional and insensitive. It became easy to see the bad qualities within me and to accept them, but the good ones were lost like a professional poker player shuffling cards in the midst of a game, deep inside my mind. I started to mentally hear words from dates like:
· You are mean
· You are too direct
· You are very abrasive with your words
· Can’t you accept a compliment ever
· Why don’t you ever say thank you rather than brush off my compliment
· Do you always have to be so rude when I say good things about you
· You are very sarcastic in a funny way when I say what I feel
And that is just a little bit of what I can remember, but you get the idea. I was very short when it came to compliments. I was cringing every time someone said something wonderful about me, to me. I lost touch with the greatness within me and I forgot that it was okay to have self love. I lost touch with the good qualities within myself and it became a learning process for me. I realized I was not ready for a relationship and the moment I realized it, I fell madly in love with the most wonderful man. But I couldn’t ruin things; I had to work on me. I had to be a much more positive person. I had to learn to accept compliments and to realize I was worth loving.
I had to be completely in love with Lisa Marie Dominguez. Think for a bit about how easy it is to accept when someone says we aren’t so great at something, or when someone brings out the bad qualities in us, like my sarcasm. I am okay with that, I accept that I am sarcastic or direct in a very abrasive manner. But to turn to me and say I have the kindest heart or that I go way above and beyond for people, was hard to swallow for me.
I worked hard on me; I knew I needed to tone down my negative learned behaviors. I started to be a bit softer, say thank you much more. I became appreciative with my surroundings, people, places and situations, especially kind words. I fell in love with me again! I actually absorbed the kind words people shared with me about me and accepted them.
I couldn’t turn to the man I loved and pursue him until I realized I wasn’t so bad. I knew I was great but I had a hard time accepting it out loud. I mean I had a very difficult time saying thank you to someone that was kind. Finally! I learned the secret, I realized I wasn’t all negative and I had to accept the great things about me too. I am not perfect, I am actually perfectly imperfect and I love it. I love me, I accepted the bad qualities in me but toned them down, and I love all the beautiful things about me as well. I love me as a whole and I have accepted both sides to me.
Today I am in love, living the dream and in a beautiful, healthy relationship with that “guy” I fell in love with. I thank God he was there, he will never know how truly appreciative I am that he was there when I was ready to love the right way.
Don’t give up on love, don’t give up on yourself. I had many people tell me I had to love myself but never truly explained the process. They just said that they felt I didn’t have self love, but they couldn’t explain to me how to completely love myself. So I figured if I explained my void with myself and gave you an idea that you would understand in a simpler way of what it may be that is keeping you from finding love, and from loving yourself.
Now go out there and love yourself and find your soul mate!