“No one told me when I wear a mask, only my mask receives love. We gain admiration and respect from behind a mask. We can even intimidate. But as long as we are behind a mask, any mask, we will not be able to receive love.” (The Cure by John Lynch)
I was going through some quotes that I have written down, trying to figure out what I was supposed to write about today and I came across this one. Go ahead and read it again.
When I first read this quote, I was just getting clean – the first time after treatment. I had no idea who I was without the drugs. I still hated God. I hated myself. I had no idea what to do with my life. I was scared and angry and so very lost. This quote hit me. Not only because I knew I had been hiding behind a mask, but also because I had no idea how to figure out who I was much less actually be her.
Since then, I have put a lot of effort into growth and self-discovery. I feel that I have a good handle on who I am now and who I am becoming.
But that was a hell of a process. The first thing I really had to do was figure out who I didn’t want to be and correct my past mistakes.
From there I could start thinking about the things that really brought me joy and then build upon that.
I learned that I couldn’t accept love or feel it from others, because I didn’t love myself. Therefore, even when other people cared for me, it didn’t feel genuine and I didn’t trust it.
I learned that self-esteem comes from doing estimable things.
When I behave as a person of integrity behaves, I become a person of integrity.
When I do things that are worthy of pride, I feel proud.
When I help other people, I feel useful.
When I set healthy boundaries, I feel protected.
When I learn to express myself, I begin to feel heard.
When I take care of my own affairs, I feel self-sufficient.
These are some of the ways that I begin to take the mask off and step into the person that I am. I am proud of who I am today. I am a woman of integrity who shows up for people, I am trustworthy and honest. I can be vulnerable and express how I am feeling and what I want.
I barely recognize the person that I used to be, but I am so grateful to her for getting me to the place I am today.
How do you practice taking off the mask?
All my love,
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