“I’m havin’ a private party/Learning how to love me/Celebrating the woman I’ve become…I felt so alone/Started to feel a little pity/That’s when I realized that I/Gotta find the joy inside of me/I’m gonna take off all my clothes/Look at myself in the mirror/We’re gonna have a conversation/We’re gonna heal the disconnection/I don’t remember when it started/But this is where it’s gonna end/My body is beautiful and sacred/And I’m gonna celebrate it/All my life (all my life)/I’ve been looking for (I’ve been looking for)/Somebody else (else)/To make me whole (ooo)/But I had to learn the hard way (ooo)/True love began with me (ooo)/This is not ego or vanity (ooo)/I’m just celebrating me/Sometimes I’m alone but never lonely/That’s what I’ve come to realize/I’ve learned to love the quiet moments/The Sunday mornings of life/Where I can reach deep down inside/Or out into the universe/I can laugh until I cry/Or I can cry away the hurt…I’m havin’ a private party/Learning how to love me/Celebrating the woman I’ve become…”—from India Arie’s “Private Party”
No truer words have been sung; I am assuredly having a private party. In this very moment in time I am learning how to love me and I’m celebrating the woman I’ve become. Despite the pangs of life, I am moving into my future with optimism and love for self! That being said, it was a most ironic morning when a dear friend of mine posted the following on Facebook regarding Love Languages earlier today. Within minutes people were chiming in about their specific Love Language and personal experiences related to them.
After reading through the thread of comments, I made an observation…many people had commented that their primary Love Language was Quality Time. So I posed the following to the respondents:
Still pained over this issue of Quality Time, the following words from Deepak Chopra brought an overwhelming sense of revelation and release to me.
People who find themselves alone rarely feel any incentive to explore love. They await contact with another person or run out to seek it. Thus we become dependent on other people to make us feel totally and permanently loved.
This expectation will, however, always be defeated, and although we blame those who failed to respond to us, who responded but then left, who stayed but then changed their minds, none of them is finally the cause of our problem. The cause is our inability to develop an unshakable relationship with ourselves. The Self is the source of love. People who live their own love stories have learned this lesson above all.
Please don’t get me wrong. I am not proposing that we shut ourselves up in our domiciles, become reclusive, and forget about relating to others. What I am proposing is that we first get a handle on loving ourselves—fully and completely, before we open ourselves up to another being.
As someone who has repeatedly looked outside of herself for a source of love, Chopra’s words are TRUTH. I was constantly pointing the finger at one lover after another because he had:
1) failed to respond [especially in the manner and/or time that I desired]
2) responded for a time, but then eventually left
3) stayed in the relationship for a time, but then changed his mind and walked away
What was even more ironic was that earlier this evening I had been texting back and forth with a college friend, and this same issue surfaced. Here’s how the “textversation” went.
Me: And how are you today?
K: I’m good—I had class so it got my mind off things.
Me: That’s good.
Any communication from R.?
K: Yeah he texted me last night and today.
Just going to remove myself emotionally from him.
It’s crazy that all these years later I still love that man.
If he’s honest then he’s not ready to let anyone in
and if he’s dishonest then I don’t need to be bothered.
Either way I have only replied to him, not initiate
any communication and just need to distance myself
from him like he’s done me.
Me: I think that is very practical.
E. emailed me this morning and my response was short,
devoid of emotion.
K: What did he say?
Me: “Good morning.
Hope you had a good trip and weekend.”
K: What did you say? “Thanks”.
That’s what I would have said.
Me: “Good morning.
I had a wonderful time. Thanks.”
My exact words.
K: Games ****** play—I tell ya.
Me: Exactly. Be all in or be out.
That’s how I see it.
But it doesn’t even matter
because I refuse to be sucked back into his vortex.
K: Same here.
Me: I’ve taken back control and it feels good.
Embedded in our words is disappointment based on the actions and/or inactions of men that we love(d). But it isn’t fair to hold them accountable without taking responsibility for expecting another human being to make us feel loved. We must be our own source of love. To hold these men accountable is being judgmental because “Judgment is whatever tells you that there is something wrong with yourself or someone else” (Chopra, 1997). Furthermore, Chopra cautions that, “There can be no sense of security in your existence when it depends upon outside factors [another being], for the unpredictable changes of reality can never be controlled…As long as love is [external] pleasure, its end—a sad tapering off into indifference and inertia—is predictable.” All that being said, the TRUTH that each of us must embrace is that, “There is no one out there waiting for you. There is only you and the love you bring to yourself” (Chopra, 1997).
♪♪♪ ”I’m havin’ a private party/Learning how to love me/Celebrating the woman I’ve become…” ♪♪♪
Linai, I love to read your reflections. Always have. This particular piece resonates with me, because as much as I enjoy human interaction, I do a great deal of retreating into myself. It just happens that I’ve always been perfectly happy doing so. I know that I’ve been blessed to have found a man totally secure in himself, and we’ve been supportive of each other throughout our journey together….34 years in 10 days. It doesn’t seem possible…Lord knows I am flawed, and sometimes I think I should submit his name to the Vatican for canonization? 🙂
I know that you are on the right track. Emotions/expectations/self esteem….I read this a while back, and I agree: “Rejection doesn’t mean you aren’t good enough; it means the other person failed to notice what you have to offer”. Mark Amend
Celebrate the woman you have become!