It is too easy to focus on every bad choice, and ever mistake we’ve made in the past. In fact, I think that all too often I get so caught up focusing on one mistake after another. How did I let it all go so wrong? The thing is, while it is important to recognize where we went wrong and how we can learn from it, dwelling on our mistakes for too long is harmful. Especially when we dwell for so long that we forget to recognize all the times we did something right.
As I was stepping out of the shower yesterday (a common place for contemplation), I remembered something I thought to myself when I was in high school: One day, this time in my life will be more than five years ago, and I’ll be a completely different person then. I’m not really sure why this particular memory swam into my mind at that particular moment, but that “one day” I thought of all those years ago is here now, and I thought to myself “wow, high school self, you were so smart!“, and I smiled and thought of the person I was back then. This is when I realized that I didn’t think about myself like this very often, and it felt really good. It felt like love. Maybe this is what it means to truly love yourself, to look at your past and see the good in it, and congratulate yourself for it.
I think for the longest time I’ve told myself that I loved myself, that I was confident, that I was happy, and I didn’t even know it was a lie. How can you know you are missing something when you never had it in the first place? It’s little glimpses like this one though, that enlighten me. I want my mental space to feel like that, to feel like love. When my mind feels like that, even for a fleeting moment, it brings me closer to being able to hold on to it. Each moment is small, like light filtering through shut blinds. When one passes me by I can open the blinds a little. One day maybe I’ll be able to open them fully, and the light will pour into me without anything to block it.