Love All of Me (+ Poem)

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At one time I thought that if there were a lot of people in my life who loved me and therefore made me feel good about myself, I would be truly happy

I realized this wasn't the case

I realized it the hard way

I realized it when I lost them to death or breakups or misunderstands or busyness

These people were so important to me and I mourned the losses

And yet they were just masking the fact that I had to be the one who made me feel good about me

To really love myself

To love ALL the parts of myself

Especially the darkest parts that I never wanted to own

I spent too long hating those dark parts and trying to annihilate them from my very being

Not wanting to accept that they will always be a part of me

But finally, mercifully learning that seeing them, loving them and not letting them control me is the only way to be free

Resisting them only made them stronger

The only way to love myself completely is to love all of me

And learn from it all  

Shadow Side

You're the one who truly taught me to love

It's not only the Light that's beautiful
But also the Dark

This Shadow that caused me to want to jump out of my very skin
The one that opposed the masks of Light that I wore
The one I kept hidden like the well-behaved girl I was raised to be

This part who I pushed away and disowned for so long

Taught me to love every part of me
Because that part has much wisdom in it
And much love

And a way to freedom

~Lauren Malloy