learning to put myself first

“Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare.” – audre lorde

i’ve been thinking a lot about self-care and what it means to be assertive with others in a kind way that still allows me a modicum of dignity. and i’ve been thinking about how easy it is to always work in the service of someone else’s feelings when i think i have a lot at stake and to neglect my own or keep giving so many chances that forgiveness is rendered meaningless.

mostly i’ve been trying to be gentle with myself, to acknowledge when i hurt or feel loss, but to keep going and learn from that. i’m considering what friendship means, where my weaknesses are as a friend, but also what my dealbreakers are when it comes to someone’s behavior that makes me feel poorly about myself. i’ve come to a place where i don’t need a friendship so badly that i’ll accept someone’s shit over and over.

i have a long way to go when it comes to listening to the people i love, staying engaged with what they’re doing, and not talking at them. i’m working on it.

i’ve been trying to go to bed earlier. i’ve have taken care of some health issues, have been more organized at home, have been reading more. i’m trying to spend less time on social media, but specifically facebook, recently. i’m not always successful with that, but i’m going to keep trying because, honestly, sometimes it really makes my heart hurt and makes me feel more alone and separate.

sometimes being single is really difficult. i watch my friends date and i wonder what’s wrong with me that no one’s really been responsive to me on dating sites or whatever. i feel lonely; i want someone to do things with. but a lot of time, i’m also okay with being on my own. i’ve come to appreciate my alone time to do whatever i want and the freedom that comes along with not having to consult with a partner.

whenever i hear the voice in my head start to tell me i’m worthless, i try to counter it with some sort of action that makes me feel good. i’ve been hearing that voice a lot recently, especially about my body. i don’t like it, because in the end, it just makes me inactive. i don’t enjoy wallowing like i used to and so i avoid it whenever i’m able.

all of this to say, it’s a process i’m undergoing and i’m going to keep working on it. because i’m worth it. because understanding myself is important. because i deserve better. because i’m not at all the failure i think myself to be. because i love hard and i’m loved as well, even when i can’t see it. because it’s a political act to enjoy yourself and your own time when everything says we have to be connected to people and media constantly, and because single women are considered spinsters and washed up and i want to undo that message in my own head. because it’s survival.

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learning to put myself first

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