If the month of February had a color palette, I think we can all agree it’d be 50 shades of red…the color of love. Walk into any store leading up to Valentine’s Day, and you’re bombarded with red decor galore and heart-shaped versions of everything from candy and cookies (of course) to makeup (sure) to frozen chicken nuggets (ok this one seems like a bit of a stretch, but also who doesn’t love a chicken nugget).
Wait just a second, is the reason we associate the color red with love because it’s an emotion of the heart, which pumps blood (and blood is so perfectly red that “blood red” is a well-known and used descriptor)? Certainly dulls some of the romantic sparkle.
So, what does your little beating heart desire? Before you answer, let me divulge a piece of life advice that society likes to keep secret – Your heart’s happiness doesn’t hinge on having a significant other, or anyone else, in your life for that matter. Yes, I’m here this season of love to talk about the self-love variety. After taking a long and winding road to learning this lesson, I can now confirm and share that loving yourself is the power move to end all power moves.
My story time starts, as all the best ones do, with Jason Bateman. In addition to Valentine’s Day celebrations, February also ushered in the anniversary of Identity Thief’s release. Jason teamed up with Melissa McCarthy to bless us with this movie masterpiece exactly 10 years ago. An entire decade has passed since I fell in love with Jason on that fateful Friday night in a movie theater in Houston. Unbelievable on some many levels.
From the moment I locked eyes with him on that big screen, Jason definitely became a sort-of motivational goal in the health journey I’d recently started. I walked miles on the treadmill watching the full Jason discography on repeat because I honestly believed that if I lost enough weight, I could find a “Jason” of my own. Here’s where I’ll hit you with the major plot twist, falling in love with Jason actually led me to fall in love with myself.
Fast forward that decade…Even though I obviously can’t deny that some devastatingly terrible things have happened, I’ve also been on adventures big and small that would completely shatter even the wildest dreams of the Jaime sitting in that movie theater in 2013. My health journey is back in full swing (because I’m human, but no quitter) – But this time around, instead of logging miles on the treadmill watching Jason on a tiny TV, I’m clocking miles on the streets of NYC watching the real-life Jason in action. Mind. Blowing.
That leads me to another ground-breaking revelation — I want to take better care of my health and wellness for myself now, so that I can maintain and enjoy this wonderful life I’m building…no longer on the hope that it’ll bring me a man and, in turn, happiness.
Because in my heart of hearts, I’m genuinely happy with my life as it is in this very moment. I’m definitely not opposed to sharing it (and some heart-shaped chicken nuggets) with someone else, but I’m also completely content to continue down this path with my three amigos…me, myself and I.
And if you don’t want to take my word for how important self-love is, maybe you’ll listen to the illustrious RuPaul, who so eloquently and succinctly put it, “If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell are you gonna love somebody else?”