About Be-loved and other musings

 

Okay, now write something inspiring. No wait, just be real. Right… that’s the point.

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The best creature that exists. totally unrelated

For whatever reason I landed back on an old video poem thing that I created a couple years ago. After the first few seconds of cringing at something so vulnerable that my slightly younger self had revealed to the world, I was startled to feel the emotion of it. I felt where I was when I made the video, where I was when I started this blog. And suddenly I realized that this blog was not as selfless as I’d like to have thought it was. It wasn’t just about trying to help other people feel loved. It was also about some part of me searching for something better. It was me expressing myself instead of keeping everything bottled up. It was a chance to be vulnerable. And it was an attempt to convince other people of a reality I was trying to convince myself of. That I was loved, that I was valuable, and that I mattered. For whatever reasons those ideas seemed ludicrous to me at the time. The blog was a way to start putting myself back together again, bring out the darkness in me and force it into light. It has been a painful, terrifying and extremely rewarding process to have this ol’ blog, and I’m so glad I did it.
Posts are getting fewer now mostly because I seem to have just enough time to pull myself together, and not so much contribute to this wonderful process that I often convince myself isn’t important. Also I think it started to get stranger and stranger to tell all this deep personal stuff to the Internet, even though it seemed to yield positive results.
I don’t really know what this blog is about right now, but I know these words are some of the few things I can find these days that isn’t trying to be perfect, or look it.

All I want to say is, it is cool to see how this blog helped me grow, learn, and come to love myself in the ways I have learned to, although I learn more each day. I guess maybe I’m not sure if I have as clear of a direction, or if I know what I have to tell lately. But maybe something will come to me. Or maybe whoever reads this could give me some advice on what I should write about. Or that my consistent rambling about life is something that I should keep doing. Or maybe I’m just tired and emotional and I’ll regret posting this in the morning.

Authenticity is hard to find these days, but I think we all know that it’s still important.

Peace and Love, thank you for reading to the bottom of this post during your likely busy day. I Hope you feel loved today

Emily

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Love Yourself

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First.
Before trying to fix.
Before you return.
Before the repair.
Before the journey on.
Before you take one more step.
Please, love yourself.

Love the legs that got you here, and the ones that will
step bravely into the wilderness.

Love the heart that did not give up, the one that beats to a song, your song.

Love the eyes that trusted beyond the darkness enough to go without for a little while.

Love the body that grows, the one that will one day perish, for now it holds you, and you have it, it does not have you.

Love the mind that examines this landscape, constantly learning and responding to endless mystery.

Love the pockets of memories that it holds, and the ones that it will one day let go of.

Love the infinite consciousness that your soul holds in a cosmic embrace, love the fact that NOBODY can truly tell you who you need to be, because nobody really knows.

Love this moment, because it’s all you will ever have. It’s all you ever needed.

Love yourself as a companion, one that will never leave your side.

Love your fear, enough to know you can conquer it.

Love your ability to decide, the one thing that can never be taken from you.

Love yourself for all of this. Love the self you have been and what you will be.

Love.

Now carry on.

Photo: Justin Kern

An Honest Conversation on Spirituality

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Sometimes I find myself wanting to leave.

Sometimes the wrong outweighs the right. Even in a place that stresses “Come to me”, it seems nothing is as easy as it seems.
If a perfect creator expected perfection, how could that be perfect? How could one overcome all of the powerlessness if not to be more powerful?

See it is skewed, it is frayed, every line crossed must eventually fade. Into a new boundary, one that expects conformism and acceptance. A God that seeks forceful justice, compliance and law-abiding citizens.

We argue over technicalities, as if choosing what bread is blessed, or what grape juice is the best, will bring a perfect God into an imperfect world.

I wonder if He sees us, and knows that we will never really be free. At least not through all of the things that we put at the forefront, all of the things that we use to make us happy, temporarily.
We struggle in silence, and blame it on each other. We think that successful independence will somehow defeat considering the mere possibility of a creator.

Just so you know we are all confused.

You may struggle to see how hate exists from followers of a God that is supposed to be love.

I struggle to understand a faith that means you don’t have to.

It is terrifying and it is grey. We may pretend to be content, but inside we are the same. We are all human.

You and I, we both search.

I hope to God that I am right, because it is the only thing that makes sense. I envy your certainty, I am certainly not judging you for what you believe. Your answers may seem clearer than mine, and for that reason sometimes I wish I was writing the same test. Sometimes I wish that I didn’t have to see any other side than this.

Because it is uncertain, it is uncomfortable, it is confusing and yet claims to be everything there is to be. Faith wants your soul, not just your hands, your spirit and everything you will ever be.

I will never say that I am right and you are wrong, all I know is I have to try. Dissatisfaction will inevitably follow everything I do if I do not see that there is a reason for it, and hope within it. You may call it destiny, fate, karma, time or predestination. However you see the future, all I know is I need to see one.

What I know is Love. The most immense aspect of my brief existence is that notion of love. The understanding that I am valuable, loved and needed. The purest love that gives purpose to the smallest of dreams, and the ones that seem insurmountable. I need to have that purpose. It gives me guidance, it gives me hope, love gives me reason.

A reason to fight through the bad days because there is something better that awaits.

A reason to love others desperately, for everyone should know the power of this thing we know as love.

Maybe it comes from God, maybe it comes from within yourself.

Maybe both are meant to co-exist, and it was us who decided to choose between.

If He says you are beautifully and wonderfully made, it would not change or disappear based on your opinion. If love were that fleeting I am not sure I would want it.

However you know love, I pray to God you would seek it. With all of your heart please do not ever stop.

I do believe that I have felt the love of God, though many days I reject it. As if not accepting it meant that I was now unworthy of even getting it. I thought that I needed to earn it, telling myself that I needed a reason to be accepted. A reason to receive love. But if what the Bible says is really true then those days are over. We just forgot that new days were coming.

I do not represent rejection, instead I accept imperfection, for I was never better inside four walls then I ever will be any where else.
I do not represent exclusion, for if we cannot share in love then truly we must be missing the point.
I do not represent judgment, God knows I am no angel, instead maybe we could see each other as equals, and approach the future together.

If I could represent anything, it would simply be love. I know that many days I will fall short, but I figure if they know me by my love, that is better than any religion.

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I really love talking about spirituality, God, love and doubt. If you have questions or would like to continue the conversation, email me! info@be-loved.net . I would love to hear your thoughts.

It’s time I tell you why I love you

Sometimes I wonder what it would take to bring us out of whatever darkness we are struggling against. I strive to know what the key message is that someone might hear to liberate them from their pain, or the experience that might shed light on whatever it is they are afraid of.

It changes I’m sure, and every day I am learning new ways to both give and receive that love that will hopefully mean something to someone. The compassion that will stretch beyond a moment of selflessness, and the empathy that surpasses a moment of putting yourself in another’s shoes.

What is it that truly changes us?

What is it that gives us a lasting sense of freedom and peace?

There are many answers to this question, in fact I think we are all searching for something to satisfy our hunger for love and acceptance. And while there may be infinite ways for this to be expressed, here is one that made a difference for me, maybe it can for you too. As I write about my life, I hope I am articulating it with as much honesty and transparency as I can.

My beautiful friend Greer wrote something for me, and it made me cry. Full on sobs are pretty foreign to me these days, but there was definitely a tear or two, that emerged from the sheer beauty of her words and how much I trusted in what she was saying.

“I am not sure Emily knows how beautiful she is.
It’s a beauty that goes beyond her way with words”

She was specific, naming things about me that have impacted her. She spoke of things that she could see in me that I cannot seem to see in myself.

“It’s a beauty that is intangible.”

“You can’t see it, but you can feel it”

These words touched my soul, as I read on I felt like I was actually believing it, without it being an inflation of pride, it was a sense of worth. It was a sense that I was enough as I am, and that I am loved for the things that are unique to me.

“It’s this beauty, Em, which draws me to you.”

To think I could have something that would be of true value to someone, not a temporary skill or possession, but real life merit for being a human, was beyond what I would instinctually believe. I write often about loving yourself as part of your own personal journey, but this was something I could never have told myself.

This is what I learned from her wonderful, kind words:

1. Tell people you love them. and MEAN IT.

2. Don’t just tell them, show them however you know best. Show them with your time, by listening, by putting them first. Show them by being there, and by celebrating with them.

3. Most importantly, don’t just say you love them, but tell them WHY.

We all want to know that we have value.

We all want to know that we matter.

We all want to know that we are different and that we are important for who we are.

Sometimes this need gets cluttered in our tendency to seek approval in ways that are fleeting. I can get caught in the cycle of temporary pride with a “like” on Facebook, or a compliment on my clothing style. While those things are important, and a little encouragement can go a long way, we NEED to be aware of how specifically we love people. Those close to us need to know we love them BECAUSE. We need to be telling each other what it is that means so much to us. Why we value the friendship, why they impact us, why they are unique. This isn’t something superficial, it’s putting yourself in a vulnerable position and stating your need for the other person. Letting them know they have value, regardless of the circumstance. Not just delivering compliments upon success or performance, but sharing real encouragement wherever and whenever necessary.

People need to know that they are valued beyond their skills. We all need to believe that we have a purpose for being here.

I cannot ask you to do something I’m not willing to do myself, nor do I want to.

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So Greer,

You are someone who fills a room. Wherever you are you carry joy, and you have this unbelievable ability to love everyone you meet. You are powerful, in your words and in your thoughts. The things that you think are transcendent, and I find myself at a loss for words sometimes as I listen to you envision life as you see it.
You love vulnerability while most people fear it. I think that is one of the most important things that needs to change in this world, and you’re already working at it so honestly.
You are yourself. You say what is on your mind because there is no point in living a life in isolation. You don’t just live in community you CREATE it. That’s pretty incredible.
When I see you I think “freedom”, because you embody what it means to be wonderfully imperfect and own the crap out of it.

I love you. You are beautiful.

Here’s to being loved, and always knowing why.

What do you do for YOU?

What do you do for you?
Today isn’t going to be a lengthy post because honestly, I needed a week off. Ironic that I’m still posting something, but hey, this whole writing thing actually can be pretty therapeutic.

I feel like we all could use time off. At least a day off. A day off from expectations, a day off from commitments, a day off of all the self-depricating things we might think about ourselves. A day off from it all. Sounds dreamy eh?

Although it might not be feasible to ditch everything you probably have going on tomorrow, I’m curious of one thing:

What do you do for you?

What do you do that makes you happy, and you have absolutely no obligation to do it except that you love it? What brings you joy, peace, purpose and excitement?
What can relax you even in the most chaotic of times?

Let’s face it. We spend most of our days doing things for other people. If you’re a student, technically it’s for you, but most of the time it feels like you’re there for someone else. If you’re a parent you are busy taking care of your kids, balancing a job and everything else that is thrown at you.

It’s a nice thing to think that we do a lot of things for other people, but sometimes that means we are quick to neglect our own needs. So what are you doing just for you? Are you doing anything at all?

I hope you can find time to do those things in the middle of everything else that’s on your plate.

As one of my new favourite sayings goes… Just do you.

Have a wonderful day!

Here’s a photo, I hope it brightens your day 🙂

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You Are A Gift

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You are a gift.

Christmas is all about giving, be it gifts or donations or cheer, above the societally superficial aspects of the holidays, it is centred around the idea of giving.

This Christmas, you should know that who you are is a gift.

Sounds cheesy, sure. But it’s easy to forget that.
It’s easy to think we need to give and give and give, all our money, time and effort in order to have value. That we must put on the perfect show each Christmas, hide all our problems and give until we can’t give anymore.
It seems Christmas can find us on either end of a giving spectrum. It can make us so consumed with the idea that we need so much, and cause disappointment if we don’t get what we presume to deserve. But it can also cause us to exhaust ourselves with the stress and responsibility of giving.

Stop for a second and know that people need… you.

Gifts can be a way of expressing that, but not many people are quick to express aloud…
“you are a gift to me, I hope this present may be a physical representation of my love for you”
Maybe that’s what this season of giving should come back to. Maybe it should be focused on celebrating the people around us and the gifts that they are to us.
If you like to show that celebration through physical possessions, so be it.
If you choose to show it through dedicating your time, so be it.
But let the people in your life know how much of a gift they are to you, and I hope you receive the same.
It’s easier for us to buy each other presents and nice things, it’s harder to declare our love and appreciation for one another. It’s easier to hand over your money, it’s harder to hand over your heart. But when we treat each other as true gifts, we become aware of what we need and not what we want.

Even if Christmas dinner overcooks,
even if Wal-mart is sold out of the toy you were certain would be the perfect gift
Even if you’re not celebrating Christmas
Even if Christmas becomes less about giving and more about getting grief for what you didn’t do
Even if the holiday season is anything but a holiday for you

You don’t need it to be perfect. You just need to be here.

Each person in my family is truly a gift, and I probably don’t tell them enough, but if Christmas Day just involved us all hanging out for the whole day, that would be a gift enough for me. But… I also love showing them my appreciation through gifts, and hopefully with those gifts we can be reminded more of our true value rather than simply the monetary value that each present may hold.

As I’ve said before, you matter. Show others that they matter too. However you do it best.

Give love this holiday season.

For those afraid of the stress of the holiday season, check out this sweet article on surviving the holidays… including tips to those who are struggling with a mental illness.

What does christmas mean to you?? Comment below!

Happy Holidays to you all, thank you for reading this blog, I truly hope it has encouraged you in some way. If you want to know more / chat / say hi / email me! info@be-loved.net

Photo Attribution: Scott Morris

Be kind to yourself

YOU are wonderful. You are gifted. There are things that you can do that nobody else can. There is a way you smile that is completely unique. You are noticed when you walk in a room. People think great things about you that they might never say because of their own fear. You are deeply loved because of everything you are that is different from everyone else.

So BE kind to yourself. 

When someone gives you a compliment or encouragement, believe that it’s coming from a place of truth and that they really mean it. Let the words sink into your heart and rest in a place of acceptance.

When you think you aren’t deserving of good things, strive to believe that those words are lies. Desire the greatest things in life, and spend your days believing you deserve them.

When you compare yourself to another person and are filled with jealousy, know that there is nothing they have that you need in order to be better.

When you are competing with a friend or a sibling, always trying to be as good as they are, always trying to outperform them, rest in the truth that you don’t need to compete for love.

When you believe that you’re not good enough. That you don’t have enough of something, you aren’t skilled enough at something…

Please just BE kind to yourself. 

Because an infinite amount of encouragement will never be fully received if you don’t let yourself believe that it can be true.  

Even if you don’t believe it now, someday you will. So say these things to yourself

YOU are wonderful. You are gifted. You are…

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