30 Things I Learned Before 30 (in no particular order) #1: It’s okay (and actually amazing), to like myself.
When I was in middle school my best friend at the time called me on night on a mean dare. When I answered she blurted out, “I hate you, and think you’re a conceited bitch”. I can still remember the sound of the laughter in the background as she hung up. I was devastated. Ironically it was one of the lowest point in my life. I had been diagnosed with severe scoliosis and had to wear a thick plastic corset-style brace for 18 hours a day in hopes of slowing the worsening curative. I was withdrawn from my classmates and depressed. I was often chided for being quiet, and told I was stuck up because I sat so straight with the brace. Most people didn’t know I was wearing it and I didn’t tell them. I had confided in my friend how hurt I was by these comments so it was especially painful that she chose those worlds as part of her joke.
For years that word “conceited” haunted me. I was terrified of deserving that label. I didn’t want to be seen as “full of myself” and it surely impacted my confidence.
Slowly, overtime, my understanding shifted. I realized that the relationship I have with myself is one of, if not the most important relationship I have in my life and deserves work and attention. But to be honest, I don’t think I could have made that shift without the friends that came into my life years later. Ones who showed me so much love and boosted my confidence. Friends that already knew the secret that it is okay to like themselves and showed me the way. Friends who don’t compare themselves to one another in toxic ways and love, and root for each other, unconditionally. I now only have friends like this. People who once seemed like rare jewels are more plentiful in my life, than I ever could have imagined. 🙏
In the words of Frida Kahlo (who inspired me to paint a self portrait) “I am my own muse. I am the subject I know best. The subject I was to know better.”
I’ve learned it’s okay to be my own muse, to celebrate my strengths and successes, to be comfortable in my own skin. It’s okay to be seen and heard rather than sinking into the shadows.
What did you learn by age 30? Share below, I’d love to know! (Even if you haven’t turned 30 yet!)