There is a lot of talk these days about self love. It’s plastered over the internet in the form of inspirational quotes and even online courses that can help you find your path back to your “true self”. When did we, especially as women, forget to love ourselves? In this age of Instagram models, Pinterest perfect photos and mommy blogs, there are opportunities everywhere for us to feel not so great about ourselves. Maybe even in yoga class there is that slight edge of competition, thinly veiled beneath the positive vibes and “Namaste”-s.
I recently watched the movie, “Eat, Pray Love” again and remembered why this book and movie resonated so strongly with women around the world when it was written/ released. I think a lot of us have experienced losing ourselves in the pursuit of romance at one time or another. I know I have!
At the end of my last relationship, which was painful and heart breaking as they pretty much always are, I found myself AGAIN in the place where Liz Gilbert was when she set out on her year long adventure which would take her to Italy, India and Indonesia. Empty, unfulfilled, contemplative and wondering if this was really all there is. What was life all about? How does anyone make a relationship work? It wasn’t my first time finding myself here either, when I first read Eat, Pray, Love, I was recently divorced and trying to figure out how my life had become something so unrecognizable and something that I no longer felt part of.
The answer was that I was not putting myself first. I would say that I stopped putting myself first, but it had been a long time, perhaps since childhood, that I had really thought about who I was and what I wanted, instead of what the world and other people wanted from me. It seemed like my entire identity was wrapped up in another person or the expectations of the people in my life.
After circling back to “that place” yet again, I realized that something really needed to change in my life and that the thing I needed the most was to love myself the way I wanted so badly to be loved. Society and the media like to stuff things down our throats about what relationships are supposed to be, supposed to look like, or supposed to feel like. One of my favorite quotes, probably ever, is:
“Perhaps, we should. love ourselves so fiercely, that when others see us. they know exactly. how it should be done,” from the poet Rudy Francisco.
That is really what it is about. I believe the nagging unhappiness that plagued my life for too long was the result of just not remembering that I can give myself all the things I need in this lifetime, starting with love.
About two years ago, I made myself a ring, to wear on my left ring finger, a finger which had once worn a diamond wedding set, and more recently a diamond engagement ring. It was meaningful to me to put a ring on my own finger, and wear this symbol of love for myself on that traditional finger for a wedding or engagement ring. This ring would serve as a reminder to myself, to always put myself first and to remember to love myself the way I wish to be loved by others. My ring features labradorite for protection, as a reminder to protect my heart, in a 14kt yellow gold setting on a sterling silver band and flanked by two thin gold bands. The three rings are a reminder of my past, present and future - a symbol popularized by DeBeers with their 3-stone diamond ring. For me, the past, present and future belong to me and me alone.
I get compliments on my ring all the time and I am constantly asked if it is my wedding ring, I often share the story of its symbolism and what it means to me. A lot of women, married and single, loved it so much that I have begun to recreate this design, with the gemstones and metals of their choosing. Whether you are single or married, the intention is the same, Love yourself first and the rest will fall into place.
This Valentine’s Day, remember that love and romance are beautiful, but the best kind of love is the one you show yourself, in the small ways everyday. Like putting your oxygen mask on first so you can then better serve others, loving yourself first will allow you the same freedom to share that love with the world.
Check out the "Self Love" rings available for purchase here: Self Love Rings
Thinking about a custom designed ring, or other piece of jewelry to express your self love? Send me an email or call 340.244.3110 for a custom jewelry consultation.