It’s Friday Night and I feel alright ( it’s more like Saturday afternoon) and I’m getting cute because I’m preparing to go out on a date. I already know what I’m going to order at my favorite restaurant and that I can choose to see either the chick flick showing at 2:30 or the action movie showing at 3:15. Excitement mixed with feminine confidence pours over me when I get to the restaurant. “How many?” the server asks me with a smile and I reply “One.” ☝🏾
Almost once every month I find the time to take myself on a date. I wear the outfit that’s been collecting dust in my closet, begging for a day out on the town. I obsessively snap pictures of myself to confirm how beautiful I look and feel. Some I post, most I delete after oogling at how pretty I am. Sometimes I even shut my phone off so that there’s no distractions to take my personal attention away from me. I usually do this either when I’m in a euphoric mood or when I’m a little down. Eating fajitas at San Jose while reading the Color Purple without having to explain or listen to anything other than “Would you like another tea?,” is both refreshing and empowering.
This topic came about when talking to a group of my female friends about how we view and appreciate ourselves. I know that I’m weird but it still came as a shock to hear that some of my most flamboyant friends don’t take themselves out; let alone show appreciation to themselves. I asked why and the main answer was that they felt weird eating by themselves or going out alone.
Maybe it’s because they never had to or maybe there’s something more going on. When dating other people we often go all out. Whatever movie they want to see is fine. Whatever they want to eat is great. They’d rather do this than that, cool. We give so much attention, time and energy to other people but what about ourselves? Especially if you’re single. If you don’t do these things for you then who will?
Obviously I’m taking this beyond the scope of taking yourself out on a date and diving right into a discussion about seeing the value in yourself even when others don’t.
I always thought of myself as beautiful though I had been rarely called that in earlier years of my life. I had also saw myself as an amazing girlfriend or companion even though I had virtually nothing to show for it for years.
No confirmation for my self esteem mixed with situationships weighed on my self image like Rick Ross on a glass bathroom scale.( Pre weight loss.) If I’m really valuable and nobody sees it then am I still valuable? If a tree falls in a forest and there’s nobody around to hear, does it make a sound?
I started doing my dates to remind myself of this. Plus it doesn’t hurt that the guy at the concession stand or the server flirts with me because he thinks I’m cute. (bonus confidence boost and free popcorn!) Dating myself became a form of therapy that allowed me to dump everything out of my mind to celebrate myself in a way no one else was willing to.
Now that I’m happily in a relationship that doesn’t mean that I’ve stopped showing myself love. It’s my outlet for when everyone and everything is overwhelming or for when I’m just randomly feeling myself. The result is that by the end of my little soiree I feel appreciated, looked after and cared for. It doesn’t really matter that it all came from me.
Dating myself is just one way I choose to keep my spirits up. Instead of focusing on the fact that I don’t have someone with me, I celebrate the fact that I don’t have to share my kids movie box that only comes with a hand full of popcorn, one candy and a small drink. (No sip of my damn juice). Instead of being self-conscious about whose watching me eat I catch up on some reading or writing. Some girls go get their toes done, some guys take a midnight drive or zone out in 2K.
Whatever you do, celebrating alone time with yourself as a choice and not a circumstance will help to increase your self image about what you want and deserve. I could sit at home sad that no one is in my life to watch Mean Girls with me OR I could get dolled up to go watch Fifty Shades Freed by my damn self.
I mean, because how can you expect others to value you if you don’t value you? or know what’s valuable about you because you never spent quality time with yourself? You want someone to appreciate you in the right way but how would you know if you don’t have a base line to go off of ? Now Tyrone gets points for the infamous Good Morning beautiful texts even though that’s all he does for you because you never told yourself you were beautiful.
You brought your girl, Ashley, Gucci, Louie and Chanel for Christmas and all she got you was a pack of socks. You’re unappreciated but you don’t know it because you never appreciated yourself.
OFF my high horse…
I’ve never had a problem being a loner. Socializing is harder for me than being out alone so that’s why it’s easy for me to have this particular outlet of appreciation. I get that most people would share the same concerns that my friends have but I honestly think that it’s worth a try. It’s liberating. You don’t have to go out on a Saturday with the Fast and the Furious 58 crowd. I like Sunday afternoons or Wednesdays. You don’t even have to take yourself on a date. The most important thing is finding a way to show yourself love because regardless of whether there’s a bae or not, you are definitely valuable. You just let yourself forget it. #LETSBUILD