I always had trouble understanding the phrase “Nobody will love you if you don’t love yourself first”. I used to think it was about how others love you only if you are confident and have a strong sense of yourself. Turns out, I was wrong. What I now understand is that you will not be able to feel loved if you don’t love yourself. Why? Because no matter how much someone may love you, you will never be able to accept that love if you don’t believe you deserve it. When you are insecure, you rely on others to give you what you deprive yourself of: love, acceptance, confidence. The harsh truth is, though, that even if someone completely sacrifices themselves for you, you will still find yourself uneasy, you may even feel uncomfortable, because in the end you keep asking yourself this crippling question: “What have I done to deserve your love? Why do you care so much about me? Why do you still care?” And it’s a never-ending circle, because no matter how badly someone loves you, no matter what they do for you, no matter how hard they try to make you love yourself, they fail, they are disappointed, and nothing changes.
Then, one day you may lose it all. All those people who mattered, all those people who tried, this one person in particular who would go to the moon and back just to see you smile. All those people who showered you with their love are now gone, because you made them run away from you, because your self-doubt is crippling not only to yourself, but to them as well. So what do you do? You are lost. And it is time to take one particular and very hard decision: that you will learn to love yourself. That you will learn to accept you for who you are. That you will try to make amends.
It took me losing things that mattered the most to me to understand that the reason why I would ruin everything in my life and hurt people was because I couldn’t accept any love, because I thought I didn’t deserve any. But now, I see. I see that everyone deserves to be loved. I see that everyone is worth of love. And the most important love we deserve is the love we give to ourselves, otherwise we will keep hurting people and ruining relationships, because self loathing is poison. So now I know that if you want to feel loved, you have to love yourself. Not in the surface, not in a superficial way, but the way you would with any other person. I am a lover, but I never loved me. So now, I love me. I am trying every day. I accept me for who I am, I realize my mistakes, own up to them and try to make amends. I find what I don’t like about me, what brings me down and I try to change it. Because people do change. People get better. And it starts by them establishing a healthy relationship with themselves.