I love you, Anxious Self.
I never thought I’d say those words. I didn’t think we’d ever have a relationship that wasn’t burdened with my trying to keep you hidden away, too afraid to let others see you. I wasn’t able to see you with compassion, only with shame. I didn’t want to claim you. I used to see all the ways I thought you were ruining my life without seeing that you were just learning how to let yourself be loved. You’ve been learning how to allow yourself to receive because it never felt safe and it never felt normal.
You thought you had to pursue, convince, and plead. You’d overthink and panic…I just wanted to turn you off and numb you out. I was ashamed of your neediness, your obsession, your endless fascination with trying to figure people out so you could get love. I was afraid of the terror that you would feel—the free-falling panic, always waiting for the other shoe to drop, helpless to control it. I was embarrassed because you were so sensitive and insecure, in constant need of assurance, like a black hole existed inside where all the love went and got lost.
You thought that you’d die if you were abandoned or rejected, unable to know your own power. I would shake my head when you bought yet another “Get Them Back” or “Be Irresistible” program, knowing that most of that information made you feel like you had to be or act a certain way, or that you had to learn how to get better before time ran out. And I used to agree with that. I couldn’t see the truth.
Now, I see you. You who wants so deeply, who craves safety, connection, and consistency…you just didn’t yet believe that you could have it. That’s why you were in so much pain. I told you that something was wrong with you for being the way you were; I was wrong. I thought I needed to fix you, when all I really needed to do was listen. I needed to attune to your heart and take ownership of you. I simply needed to love you and support your evolution.
I know it’s been painful to feel like you can’t have what you want. I don’t know where you first learned that, but I’m sorry. It feels so awful, that thought, because it’s a lie. It’s that lie that kept you abandoning yourself, your dreams, your boundaries, and what you really wanted in favor of what was “good enough” in the moment. We wasted time not knowing these things, but it’s okay.
It’s okay that you’re afraid. It’s okay to be afraid of letting go of what was never enough and allowing your heart to break open and grieve the fact that you loved more, that you gave more, that you wanted more. This is the kind of love you have to offer: deep, adoring, loyal, compassionate, and steadfast. Imagine being on the receiving end of a love like that! You deserve to have for yourself what you’ve so generously given. It’s time that you truly know the worth of a heart like yours. It’s time to value what you bring and let go of others who can’t meet you there.
I love that you’re sensitive. Oh, the things we would miss out on feeling if you weren’t! I love that you care deeply and want others to be happy. I love that you allow others to impact you and influence you. I love that you have a big heart and that you love so much. It shows me that you’re brave because you’re willing to be vulnerable. It shows me you’re willing to feel, where I could not. It shows me you desperately wanted and needed connection that you didn’t get; this is why connection is something you hold precious. Connection and commitment are two of your gifts. It’s your gift to be loyal and stay in it, even when it doesn’t serve you—that’s how big your heart is. That’s how much you love. You deserve so much more.
What I really want you to know is, I want you. You are mine. However imperfect you are, even if you change or don’t, I will love you now and love you through it. You are safe here with me. I’m here to tell you that you can have more. You can have the love that you want because it starts here with us.
I will be the gatekeeper of your heart. I will love you enough to hold high standards for the love we receive. I will protect you. When you’re afraid to trust, I will hold the line. When you’re afraid love isn’t coming, I’ll remind you that love is everywhere, and especially, that love is right here, within us.
We will have a beautiful life no matter what happens, that I can promise, because we’ll be together. I know you want someone to hold you; I know you deeply desire a love you can reach your fingers out and touch. You can have that. It just may not be through this person at this time. It just may not be in this very moment, but that kind of love is not an if for us, it’s simply a question of when, because we’ve already found it.
Some day, some day soon, someone will recognize your gifts, your strengths, your soul, and they’ll want to choose you and fight for you, just like I have. They’ll be able to see you because I will let them. I will no longer hide you away. They’ll choose you with great determination and clarity. They will simply reflect the love that we have on the inside.
And even though life may change and nothing is guaranteed, as long as we have each other and put each other first, we will always have love. I’m so glad you are mine and that I opened my eyes to recognize the beauty in your being.
I will never abandon you. Now that I have you, I’ll never let you go.