Although I never knew my maternal grandfather, who was Nigerian, he did leave me a very important legacy - my Nigerian middle name. In fact, my mother and I share the same middle name - Ebironkeh - which my mother tells me means "cherished one." The only snag was the name turned out to be both a curse and a blessing. More about that later.
Two things that make me go all gooey inside: lions and domestic cats. Since lions are not exactly pet material, I tend to just go wild over cats. It doesn't matter if the cat is affectionate or ignoring me I just feel all this love pouring from me when I see them.
As I was walking home yesterday evening, I noticed two cats sitting outside this house. I stroked the one near the gate. He was very friendly and even rubbed his head against my coat. It felt so good being with the cat. After a few minutes I said goodbye to my friend.
My idea of being cherished is rather like having love poured on me like I did with that cat, not just for a few minutes, all the time. I'm not ashamed to say that I need lots of TLC (tender loving care). For many years I sought that kind of attention from loved ones and ended up frustrated and depressed. Why? Because people were way too busy living and dying to love me the way I wanted to be loved. I couldn't get that kind of love in intimate relationships either because it was way too high maintenance for my boyfriends to contend with. The meaning of my name - cherished one - ended up being a curse.
I'm reminded of the John Legend music video called Save Room where he's asking his girlfriends to make time to be together but they are all too busy, busy, busy to love. I know the feeling, mate.
After years of frustration and depression, my hunger to be cherished forced me to wake up to the realisation that the only one who knows how to cherish me the way I want to be cherished is Me. It was as if I had discovered the secret magic code which opened up the dam of inexhaustible love that gushed out of me. I realised myself as the Love I was seeking. In other words, the "cherished one" curse had been transformed into the "One who cherishes" blessing.
Does this mean I no longer need human relationships? Yes and no. I actually appreciate all kinds of relationships and friendships, it's just that I've realised that people's idea of love is rather like fighting over scraps. Why settle for scraps when I can eat from the Source? As the Source, I am my own lover, teacher, guide, friend, healer, inspiration, entertainment, provider, joy, wisdom, power and all that I seek. Therefore,
Instead of blaming my family for not loving and cherishing me the way I've always wanted to be cherished, I learned to cherish myself.
Instead of waiting for the One to appear so he can fall in love with me and we live happily ever after, I fell in love with myself and live happily ever after.
When I'm in a relationship, instead of waiting for my boyfriend to find time in his busy schedule to be with me, I enjoy being by myself.
Instead of waiting for friends to make time in their busy schedules for us to meet up and have fun, I have fun by myself.
Instead of waiting for people to accept me for who I am, I accept myself as I am.
Instead of waiting for a teacher or guru to make time in his busy schedule to share his divine wisdom, which you have to pay for, I receive inspiration and guidance from myself.
Instead of waiting for a doctor/healer to fit me into his busy schedule, I love myself back to health.
And so on.
When I realised myself as the One who cherishes, I had another problem to contend with: the intensity of the love that was pouring out was way too powerful for most people to cope with. To give love freely without expecting anything in return was utter madness. Instead of waiting for the right people to come along who are open for me to express my love, I decided to create instruments that are capable of receiving my love. My blogs are my instruments of love. Now I can pour as much love as I feel like expressing without feeling frustration at not having someone to share my love with.
As I was pondering on these ideas last night, I felt my throat getting itchy. I poured love on myself. I was so enjoying loving myself that I stayed awake all night. Even though I didn't have a wink of sleep last night, I feel as fresh as a daisy. That's love for you.
Back to my love of cats, I believe one reason why I resonate with their nature is they seem to be incredibly self-sufficient. They know how to be in bliss whether they are loved or not. The man of my dreams has to be a cool, self-sufficient, cat like me.
There is no need for me to fight over scraps when I know myself as the Cherished One.
Thank you, grandfather, for your beautiful legacy.
Related articles: Things that Make Me Smile; Being the Source - Revisited; Social Network; It is All Nothing - Revisited; The Power of Selfishness; The Game of Healing and Channelling; Why the Inner Critic is Now My Greatest Ally; Being a Parent; My Beloved; Being Pampered; Immortality; Putting Love First; Come, Let Me Kiss You Better!; My Love Companion; Self-Acceptance