I have a tattoo on my left forearm. It is a simple, black line drawing of two cats. I happen to have two cats. The tattoo may symbolize those two cats, as I love them to pieces, they are my fur babies. Or it may mean something more in depth.
With that being said, I don’t believe that I am a cat lady, but some may argue with me about that. Do I talk to my cats, yes. Do I tell them good morning and good night, yes. If they are snuggled up on the bed and it’s my time to go to bed, do I figure out a way to climb into bed without disturbing them, yes. I guess you can draw your own conclusions about what classification I fall under.
While I do love cats, I do believe they happen to be my spirit animal, the tattoo is not a symbolism of my two babies. It is something deeper, more profound.
I struggle with positive self-talk. I beat myself up like there is no tomorrow. There are a lot of shoulds and shouldn’ts. Numerous why did you and how could you? Followed by you are dumb, not talented, and in capable of being loved. It’s brutal.
Out of desperation, I pleaded for assistance. In response to this harsh talk, my therapist introduced a new way of thinking. I’d like to share with you my understanding and interpretation of what was spoken to me a year or so ago.
When you have a baby kitten, a small, furry, short bodied kitten they are simply adorable. However, their head is bigger than their bodies and this makes them a little front heavy. With their odd shaped little body, they stumble and when they walk, it is a struggle due to their unstable legs. It does not take long for them to fall down after attempting to walk. What do we as their human parents do when this happens? Do we yell at the baby kitten? Do we chastise kitty for their inability to walk like their adult counterpart? Are words like dumb and a mistake come out of our mouths directed to the kitten?
The answer is no. We scoop up the baby kitten and we love it. We tell the baby kitten that they are safe and it is ok that they fell down. That they can try again. Vocally we share with baby kitten their immense strength, determination, as well as their ambition. We put baby kitty down on the ground, wish it well and hope for the best.
Do you treat yourself like a baby kitten trying to walk? Do you speak positive, loving words to yourself like you would to a baby animal? I know I don’t, but I keep trying. I have to rewrite the narrative that has been programmed into my brain. It’s hard and takes a lot of practice, but I am working on it daily.
The tattoo on my arm reminds me to apply baby kitten love to myself. It is in a place where I can easily see it and appreciate the reminder.
I challenge you to love yourself like a baby kitten. Speak positives and spread love to yourself.