“We accept the love we think we deserve,” was something I read in one of my favourite books, and for the longest time so much of that simple sentence resonated with me. Because it tells you this: when you are thinking low of yourself, we will resort to someone who will treat us badly; when you are thinking high of yourself, we will wait for someone who will raise the bar.
It’s a vicious cycle that we get pulled into – one that took me years to comprehend, and even longer to break out of. Because, here I am, trying my hardest to constantly see the best in others when all they show me is less than I ever deserved. However, in being shown this, adapting to it, I thought I deserved this mediocre kind of love.
I started to accept less because I was afraid, terrified (almost) of searching for more and then returning empty handed. I accepted less because I had some sort of distorted image of ourselves that blocks us from accepting the love that is actually out there – the one that was ready to welcome me as I am.
I accepted neglect, rejection. I rationalized it.
I built up a level of acceptance and expectation around what I had been given.
I lowered my standards.
Until one day I realised this: the love I was accepting was a reflection of the love I was giving myself.
So, I turned it around. I turned myself around.
The love I gave myself became soft instead of hard. My heart became gentle, once more, but so powerful that it was overwhelming. I no longer questioned my self-worth.
I showered myself with fairy dust, flowers and sunshine that was so bright it would blind you.
Because the love I deserve from others is one that makes me feel like I am an innocent child on the night before Christmas, every DAMN day of the week.
I deserve the kind of love that lets me be myself. The love that believes in our strengths, and the one that will hold me closer when I run into trouble.
I deserve a love that is without a doubt the easiest thing I have ever done – without question. I deserve laughter in the living room, and giggles in the bedroom. I deserve a love that is reminiscent of the crackling fireplace and fuzzy blankets in December.
I deserve a love that feels like home.
Now, tell yourself that, over and over again.
Because we all deserve that kind of love. The kind that we grow up hearing about, reading about. The kind of love that will take your damn breath away. The kind of love that is better than any materialistic item thrown at you. The kind of love that is measured in smiles, warm hugs and tingles up and down your spine.
Because the kind of love we deserve is warm. The kind that covers you like a blanket in the night protecting you from the darkness. We deserve the kind of love that feels like a cabin in the woods, a tent on the summit of a mountain. We deserve it all.
We deserve a love so BIG that it sets the stars on fire.
So, remember this:
You deserve more.