I got thinking about my self-esteem again. I have been on a “you are not good at anything” kind of mode for some time (as some of you may already know). I was sitting at my desk today and reflecting on myself. Then, I was like: You know what? My parents never saw me this way. I need to see myself as they saw me. Who exactly did they see me as?
Well, I was their little girl….the youngest….their forever baby. My siblings would probably tell you that I was their “golden child” because I was the youngest that got away with everything…and I was spoiled. I was pretty much alone with both of my parents from 8th grade to 10th grade (when my mother passed away and my sister moved home to help my father care for me). So, in a way, I was like an only child for those two years. My father saw me as being like my mother. He always told me I was smart, just like her. That always made me smile. He also told me that I was pretty like her. That made me smile as well because I knew just how in love my dad was with my mom. They were always more protective of me, but I was okay with that. I liked that.
I once got talking to my mother about a miscarriage she had. The baby was supposed to be right before me in birth order, but it didn’t live. I asked my mom what would have happened if the baby had lived. She looked at me and very directly said, “You wouldn’t be here.” I remember getting quiet and uncomfortable. She then added, “It was meant to be. I was meant to have you and not that baby. I would rather have you because you are special. You are supposed to be my baby.” That’s what I was to both of my parents: special. I need to see myself as special. They gave me a love in my heart that no one else can even come close to filling or replacing. In my time of grief, it is easy for me to get down on myself and get depressed. But, I think during these times I need to remind myself to step back and see myself as my parents saw me. To see myself as their “special baby” who could do anything if she only put her mind to it.
During our grief, depression, and anxiety, let’s work on seeing ourselves through one of our loved one’s eyes. It may be hard to see ourselves through a deceased loved one’s eyes, but I think sometimes this may help us. Seeing myself from my parents’ point of view made me smile and feel “warm and fuzzy” inside. It made me feel loved and valued. It made me feel like a someone. It may be hard to do this at first, but this could be a step we need to take in helping heal what we are enduring. Let’s see ourselves through our loved one’s eyes.