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This Valentine’s Day… Learn To Love Yourself First!

I’ll never forget that day… The day I got the text message saying.. “Have you got a minute?”

Photo by Fernando Brasil on Unsplash
Photo by Fernando Brasil on Unsplash

The text had surprised me a little.  I’d been experiencing a little bit of “radio silence” from this person in the past few weeks.  I’d justified it by saying,  “Oh he’s busy….”  “Oh, he’ll respond when he can…”  “Oh, it’s o.k, he assured you everything was fine… remember?”

It was not fine… That I was about to find out.

Now I need to set things straight right here and now. I am a happily married woman with two beautiful children.  My texter, was actually a trainer I’d trained with.

Over the space of six months our relationship had developed into a true friendship. I no longer saw our relationship as student – teacher, and his behaviour indicated that he felt the same way. This person was someone who I’d grown to love very deeply, someone who had been exceptionally loving, helpful, supportive, and so so beautiful, but still was just my close friend.  There were many reasons, apart from the obvious, why I would never have let this relationship develop further. 

This friendship though, meant the absolute world to me. I cherished this person and would have done anything for him.  Even though my gut reaction at first was that he could not be trusted, our interactions over a long period of time, wore down that wall, and I allowed him all the way in. He had a seat right next to my heart.

This man was such a force in my life. We’d speak daily, mostly by text, and sometimes by phone.  He’d be one of the first people on my facebook posts, with a big loveheart and a comment or two. 

He was also going places in his life as well, and so I also felt immense pride and joy to have him as my friend, and such a major part of my life.  I knew that I could rely on him to be there for me, whenever I needed him to be.

This relationship was EXCITING, It was EXHILARATING, It was AWESOME!

So much so, I actually became a little “addicted” to the attention.  Knowing full well that whatever I did would get his attention on Facebook, and the constant “banter” back and forth between us by text would keep happening. 

Sometimes, when he was a little slow in responding, I felt pangs of withdrawal… Where was he?  Where was my amazing friend?  Why wasn’t he giving me the significance, the love and the attention he’d been giving me for so long? 

Deep down, when I felt these pangs,  I knew that what was happening between us, wasn’t 100% right.  I knew that it probably wasn’t completely healthy for me, however, it was soooo addictive, so exciting, and so exhilarating, there was no way on this planet I planned to give it up.  I mean, it wasn’t that bad, was it? 

It was actually like a drug though… I’d find myself deliberately posting certain things to get a response from him… I can remember one day, when three of my closest and dearest had a “wrestling match” on one of my posts to better each other. Who could put the best comment on it.  My poor husband jumped in on this one, and well… 

I first noticed the slightest change in his behaviour a few weeks before the “showdown”.  It was very subtle, and if my spidey senses hadn’t been in tune that day, I may not have even noticed it.  I noticed he was slightly curt with one of his replies… not like him at all.  He’d suddenly become that little more professional.  When I questioned him on it, the response I got was back in the old style, so I let it slide. 

I did however, let him know at that moment, exactly what I thought of him, how much he meant to me, and how much I cherished what we had.  We’d never been backwards in coming forward and telling each other how much we loved each other, so I made sure I reinforced this, and let him know exactly how I felt.

Getting the radio silence after this, wasn’t unexpected. He did have something big going on in his life that would be taking ALL of his focus, so I was easily able to justify it being so quiet.

Then, the text came in… Firstly, some flippant reply to me pouring my heart out, and then “Have you got a minute?

We got on the phone, and in his style, he instantly attempted to get rapport with me (He already had that in bucket loads, I truly loved this man).  Then he asked the question that changed my life.

He asked,  “All the energy you give me… is that anything other than professional?”  I was silent for a moment, totally in shock and I replied.

“Well yes, we’re friends aren’t we?” 

This is when all hell broke loose. Before I knew it, he was telling me he’d only ever seen me as a student, to which I totally called BS. The result of this was being told in no uncertain terms that I was not to text him privately anymore, and that I was not allowed to tell him I loved him.  In the space of five minutes, what we had, and what we shared had been completely blown apart and tarnished to the point of no return. I was devastated, confused, hurt, torn into pieces and I really didn’t know what to do next.

The pain I felt was beyond much I’d felt before. I was completely confused, side swiped, lost, ripped apart, broken and destroyed. It was a long, long road to recovery.

Fast forward 18 months.  We don’t speak… in fact he hasn’t actually returned any of my calls since then.  It’s really over, and I’ve had to deal with a world of pain whilst I healed my broken heart and soul.   Yes, this one cut that deep.

What I gained from it though was one of the biggest lessons and learnings of my life… Learn to love yourself.  If I’d had my own confidence, my own certainty, my own self belief, and believed in my self worth, his attention would have been complimentary.  If I’d known that I was good enough, worthy enough and validated myself, then his words and his love would have been nothing more than a bonus. 

The fact that I became so reliant on this man for his love and attention, taught me that I truly needed to love myself and give to myself first before I loved another… so I did. Over time, I built up my confidence, my self esteem, my self worth and my self belief.. I learned that I have everything I need inside of me to be successful and that I do not need anyone’s validation in my life.. I’ve got this, and from now on, I’ll take the compliments, not because I need them, but because they’re still nice to hear. Aren’t they?

If this has resonated with you, then pop a comment below and let me know. If it’s hit the mark then make sure you make the change and start loving YOU now.  It’s quite o.k to have these people in our lives, as long as you are strong enough in yourself, that if, for some reason they leave, you’re able to stand up on your own.

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