What The Desert Taught Me About Self-Love

woman wearing black long-sleeved shirt and white shorts outside white building
Roberto Nickson (@g) / Unsplash

Somewhere between Christmas and this exact moment, sitting on my bed, listening to the sound of the neighborhood kids laughing and frolicking, I learned to stop fighting.

I think I got sick of being in the same situation over and over again.

I got tired of blaming everyone else.

In reality, I had been kidding myself all along.

You see, I have always fought with every bit of energy in me to keep everyone I have ever loved.

And without fail…

They have all left. Every single one of them.

I have always played the martyr saying, “I loved too much” or, “I loved too hard,” but if I were to be brutally honest, I get attached too easy. I am always quick to lose myself in someone else, leaving my happiness in their hands.

Attachment is easy because it isn’t real. It isn’t love. It is a mess of insecurities and self-hatred.

And I never loved myself enough to truly love anyone.

My mom asked me the other day what it was about driving out to the desert that made me so happy.

I didn’t really know how to answer that. So I stuck with a generic answer of, “It is just so beautiful.”

After some pondering, it came to me that it makes me so happy because it helps me heal from all the made up ideas I have carried around with me for so long. It helps me be honest with myself.

There is something about being surrounded by the beautiful red rocks and the quietness that makes me understand just how lucky I am. I get to escape to these places on the weekends knowing that I have to leave and that is okay.

My relationship with the desert is free of attachment and permanence.

That is love.

My mind can be scary and fearful. It is terrified of the uncharted territory of loving without attachment. It knows that means loss of control.

My relationship with the desert has allowed me to be free again.

My relationship with the desert has helped me see my value and see the adventurous, less anxious version of myself.

My relationship with the desert has forced me to let go and see that life has so much more in store for me than clinging on to everything in fear.

There is so much power in letting life happen and seeing that the lines between love and attachment are not so blurry. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

“You’ve got to let go of who you were, to become who you are.”

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