I’m learning that metta is about more than speaking wishes. It’s about living them. How do I show my love to others? How can I show love to myself?
It’s really hit me how “empty” it can feel to repeat phrases like “May I be happy. May I know love,” when I’m not caring for myself fully on a day to day basis.
Why is it so easy to ignore our own needs?
What does self love look like?
Again, I look at my love for my children (the most complete, unconditional love I have ever known) as my example.
Because I love my children, I encourage them to trust and respect themselves – to listen to their bodies when they are hungry, thirsty, or tired. To take care of their bodies, and their appearances.
Because I love my children, I encourage them to seek out friends who are kind and relationships that are good for them (and let go of friends/relationships that don’t make them feel valued).
Because I love my children, I tell them that they are beautiful, that they are special, that they are enough. And I believe it.
Because I love my children, I take them places I know they will enjoy, and help them find activities that will bring them joy and nourish their spirits.
My love for my children is an ever-present wish for their happiness and wellbeing. It is a motivation to help them achieve happiness and wellbeing. It is acceptance of who they are, exactly as they are. I don’t want/need anything to change.
It is my wish to cherish and care for myself this same way.