Recently, I've learned some hard lessons in self-love.
Often times, it's not as simple as putting on a face mask and taking a bath.
Sometimes, it's leaving someone you love. Sometimes, it's having hard conversations with yourself and others that put you out of your comfort zone. Sometimes, it's eating or drinking water when even that feels too hard.
It's about practicing understanding, forgiveness, and compassion towards yourself. It's about putting yourself first and not being ashamed of doing so.
It might put you out of your comfort zone to have those conversations. It might make you incredibly sad for a few days to leave that person you never thought you'd leave. It might annoy you or feel like too much work to shower, eat, and sleep.
However, it's all worth it in the end. Take the nap. Take the shower. Go out to eat with that friend. Have a hard conversation. Cry it out. Adjust, grow, and be patient with yourself. Life is hard. Knowing what you need to do and what you need to leave behind is hard enough, and acting on it is even more difficult.
Although it may be hard to act on what you know, it's so much more important to be kind to yourself for the long term, rather than ignoring your feelings and satisfying something harmful you may want in the short term. If you know someone makes you happy right now, but you doubt their ability to make you happy for years to come or fear they may hurt you, distancing yourself may be for the best. It's better to rip off a bandaid before it becomes a giant bandage that you can't live without.
I hope each and every one of you has the strength to love yourselves today.