Life-ers. Our flaws that are ours for life. Not a broken leg, not a bad haircut, life-ers last as long as our genetic code stays in tact. I was talking with my beautiful eighteen year-old niece yesterday about loving our flaws. The look she gave me was enough to say,
“Auntie Sana, you are the crazy auntie aren’t you?”
Unfortunately, when people give me that look, despite the love in their eyes telling me to stop before I make things worse, I get set off to flap harder against the air trying to make them see how to fly. My thoughts, like little ducklings with fluff for feathers, don’t always show what they will become when they are matured in discussion and practice. So when my niece gave me her loving, “You are crazy,” look, I started talking faster, louder and my hands were doing the up and down thing.
I wanted her to know that she will love the people she wants to love better when she does that for herself. When she loves her flaws, seeing them like a favorite rock she’s never been able to consistently climb or a piano sonata that she has practiced over years but still trips through and loves it even though she will never be its master – when she loves her imperfect self that much then she can love me. She can love me better when she doesn’t hate her failing self. I fail her and will for life. She can love me as I am when she gives herself the same passion. She can love me enough not to want me to stay this way, when she pushes herself, works herself and throws her energy against the barriers against her own growth – why? because she loves herself enough to do that.
My niece and I talked about God too. God loves us completely now. He doesn’t want us to become perfect before He loves us entirely. He doesn’t love the parts of us that don’t let Him down only. He doesn’t divide us up between good and bad cells, genes for heaven and genes for… well, not heaven. God loves us passionately now. Why in the world would we think He would want us to feel any differently about our own selves? Wouldn’t that be pretty lame if God said,
“I feel this way about you, but don’t you go accepting your own flaws. Only I can do that. You had better hate your flaws and despise yourself for them until they go away.”
I was reading an amazing story accounted by The Itty Bitty Boomer, where we are given some of the inner scene of one woman’s flawed and perfect self, Carie, growing to love her life-ers just like you and me. She tells us,
“Recovering from obesity is much like recovering from any addiction – the battle is never done or over. Over the last 3 years I have regained 25 of the 90 pounds that I lost. I could fall easily into blame and self-hatred and beat myself up for failing again … but I do not think I’ve failed. And the more I keep myself in that mindset … the easier it is for me to keep on track to dump the pounds picked up.”
Self-Care Tip – Love your life-er. Have you given your life-er a hug today? (Smile.)
Questions: What are your life-ers? Are you able to love them yet?
What do you think about a God who asks you to love yourself either differently than He does or as well as He does? How do you see it? Please tell us your story.
- Don’t Run Away. You Might Fall In Love With Your Flaws. (friendtoyourself.com)
- What Is Your Life-er? (friendtoyourself.com)
- Let Love Come, Even When It Poops On You (friendtoyourself.com)
- Love Differently, Love Your Flaws – Be a Tall Poppy (friendtoyourself.com)
- When You Fail, It Is Just Part of Your Journey so Keep On – Presence (friendtoyourself.com)
- Scheduled Intimacy – Mother’s Day (friendtoyourself.com)
- Recovering From The Hurts Of Morbid Obesity – Lessons from Cari … (boomeradventures.wordpress.com)
- One Woman’s Struggle To Shed Weight, And Shame (friendtoyourself.com)
- Childhood obesity: A parenting failure? (20114t.wordpress.com)
- Addiction (hethercrawford.wordpress.com)
- A Series on Obesity and Making Biological Excuses (tbking.wordpress.com)
- What’s Causing the Obesity Epidemic (theness.com)
- How to Keep Off Pounds You Lost (foodfromthegarden.wordpress.com)