$ How was your Valentine’s day?
$ Nothing special. A couple of months ago I started organizing an ambitious surprise. I wanted to spy out (with some help of my family or without it) what a dream gift in my wife’s opinion was. I was going to order it, wrap up in beautiful paper and put it the drawer in my office by the end of January if not sooner. I kept telling myself: tomorrow, I’ll do it tomorrow till February 12th, so that I could only choose out of what was left in my wife’s size, I cued in an overheated shopping mall, overpaid, spent ages in traffic jams, caught a terrible cold. Consequently, we preferred to stay at home. My wife made an exquisite dinner, we dressed up, the kids liked our clothing, so different from our regular sportswear. How about you?
$ I got engaged on the Valentine’s Day. Don’t ask me how many years ago. So for me it’s a double romantic day. I met my boyfriend-to-be in December, we had a couple of dates, we went jogging together, did some trekking in the mountains and nothing …. well … no … not nothing happened, we both got that spark but nothing like ‘I love you’ at the third meeting. I mean nothing indicated that by the end of January we wouldn’t be able to get by without each other. My boyfriend was in separation at that time. I thought he would be reluctant to formalize another relationship; nevertheless, on February the 14th we got engaged and married at Christmas.
$ Not only are your Valentine Days double romantic but also you double celebrate Christmas.
$ That is so because I am a happily married woman.
$ That’s a good point. If you didn’t like Christmas and got married at Christmas and then divorced, that time of the year would be double challenging.
$ To say the least. I traveled far to get to this point.
$ It’s interesting. Tell me about it.
$ There were several steps. Firstly, I fell in love with myself. And before I did, I acted as if I had, imagining what it is like to be in love with yourself. How does it feel not to be able to resist to touch you every time you’re around, to kiss you every time I see you, to smile blissfully at the very thought of you? I anticipated my own requests. I fell for myself. I was crazy for myself. I felt consumed by myself. I dreamt about myself. When I smelled my perfume I was about to swoon. I couldn’t help it. I wasn’t able to say ‘no’ to myself. I wanted to spoil myself rotten.
$ It doesn’t appeal to me. I find it weird.
$ It must be weird for somebody who has never experienced that. Anyway, it worked. Friends and clients asked me whether I was in love.
$ You don’t say.
$ That’s the way it was. Next, I explored the difference between falling in love and loving myself. I came to the following conclusions: I love myself because I know myself, I am aware of my needs and I consider them important. I respect myself. I appreciate myself and enjoy my own company. I listen with empathy to my Inner Voice. I keep balance between giving and taking in all relationships. I accept myself. I will elaborate on that in one of the next steps.
$ To sum up, you fell in love with yourself, then you loved yourself.
$ Right. Next I realized what it meant to me to be in a relationship. I put emphasis on the following: my needs and my partner’s needs are equally important. We know each other, we are aware of each other’s needs and we respect each other. We look forward to seeing each other. We appreciate each other. We listen to each other with empathy. I love him and he loves me because we both love ourselves. We keep balance between giving and taking. We support each other. We accept each other. Our umbilical cords are cut.
$ I know something about it.
$ There are some more: we take care of each other and we enjoy being together; however, we also have diversified pass-times. We develop, fulfill and blossom in our relationship.