I strongly believe that to be loved and accepted, we must first love and accept ourselves. Still, there are days I wonder, ‘isn’t self-love the first step to self-management?’ I am learning to love myself even when I disappoint myself. I am learning to manage my expectations and in so doing, manage my emotions.  Are you?

In my last post, I promised to share about my plan forward 2018 session with Coach Bidemi Mark-Mordi. I apologise that I wouldn’t be able to do that today because I haven’t put my thoughts from that session on paper. Why? It’s been a very activity packed week for me. Today, I’m sharing a few lessons from my life experiences in the last two weeks. 

On January 14th, 2018, I got a call from my husband informing me that our 3 years, 8 months old second born son missed his step on a slippery tiled floor, and that he slipped, hitting his head on a sharp edge of the floor tiles, resulting in a slightly deep cut on his fore head just above his left eye brow.

By the time I got off the phone, alighted from the bus to rush to the hospital where he was being treated, I was already shaking, almost hysterical! LOL! All sort of negative scenarios played like a movie in my mind. I couldn’t ignore the feelings of anger, pain, regret and the fear that it was an injury on the head. If you have read about head injuries and mental illness, you will understand why I felt that fear.
As I embarked on the one hour trip to the hospital, I thought about how our son was conceived, the challenges I encountered during the pregnancy that lead to a 3-months bed rest prior to his delivery. I thought about the ‘hole in the heart’ scare we had when he was 14 months old due to a misdiagnosis. I thought about how what was said to be a ‘hole in the heart’ turned out as a case of pneumonia and of how he was treated and of how God healed him and he got back on his feet. I thought about how kind God has been to us concerning our second born son and I started to say, ‘thank you Lord’ from a grateful heart. I thanked God, because the situation could have been worst if he had landed on the sharp edge with the back of his head. Really, the situation could have been worst.

By being thankful to God from a grateful heart, I became calm and was in a better control of my emotions. From this experience I learned that;

1) The quality of your personality is directly proportional to the quality and quantity of God’s love in you. In this situation, the quality and quantity of God’s love in me reminded me of how kind God has been to me in blessing me with a family in the first place. Who would have thought that the girl that went ‘mad’ a few years ago would have the capacity to become a wife and mother some day? Who would have imagined it? Indeed, then, it would have been hard to conceive that thought because I looked unfit for the roles. But as CeCe Winans sang, Mercy said NO. My entire life revolves around the love of God. God’s kind of love is liberating. Read 1 Corinthians 13:1-8.

2) The quality of your personality will be tested when life happens. Recently, I came across a bill board advert of a popular insurance company that said, ‘when life happens, happen to life…’ Happen to life? I asked myself. And I realised that, it’s a yes! We can happen to life. We happen to life when we make up our minds to keep going regardless of the setbacks. We happen to life when we choose to walk in love, not hate. We happen to life when we are resilient, strong, and strategic in the face of difficulties. And Yes, for the mentally ill person, happening to life may entail taking prescribed medication, eating healthy meals, resting, talking to a clinical psychologist, keeping an appointment with the psychiatrist,  maintaining a positive perspective to life and making the choice to be happy.

A sponge is only as useful as the detergent you apply on it. The highest quality of the sponge is the ability to absorb, retain and dispense. In the same way, we are as strong as the quality of our individual inspirations. We are as strong as the quality of content we have at the core of our being.

What are your qualities? What makes you unique? What’s the quality of your heart? When you are faced with a mind blowing situation, what’s your first response? How do you define your response as the situation unfolds?

My son’s response to his situation amazes me. He didn’t stop playing hard and joking.

One morning as I finished giving him his medication, I said to him lovingly, ‘Pele, sorry for this pain’. ‘Sorry, for what?’ he exclaimed excitedly in one breath, easily transferring his excitement to me! I realised quickly that I am the one who should say sorry to myself for putting myself through the emotional torture of overthinking the situation.

Sometimes, with overthinking, comes pain and regret. This is why making the decision to love yourself regardless is important. So love yourself, and beyond loving yourself, commit to living out the quality and quantity of God’s love.
My name is Precious, I was Bipolar and I live a full life.  

Dear Lord, thank you for everything that you are to me. Thank you for the gift of life and for all the things you have done for me. Today, I ask that You would fill me with your grace to see the way you see. Give me the grace to stay in your love. Give me the grace to grow in the quality and quantity of your love. Help me to live beyond my emotions. 

Scripture: 1 John 4:18
“Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.” – New Living Translation

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