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Love Thy Self

The journey to self love

By Joe PattersonPublished 2 months ago 4 min read
Top Story - February 2024
25
Love Thy Self
Photo by Ben Masora on Unsplash

Kareema walked through a field of flowers with a big smile across her face. All her life the hardest thing for Kareema was learning how to love herself. After 25 years she now believes that she has discovered the secret to self love and she is ready to share it with others.

It all started when she was just four years old. She was in her class at pre-school and she vividly remembered a group of the other kids not wanting to play with her because her skin was “too dark” for them. When this happened she went to cry in a corner by herself at recess. Her wails were suddenly interrupted by the shadow of a little boy named Kenyon standing over her with a dandelion. “What do you want?” She asked him. “I just wanted to give you this.” Kenyon responded. “It reminds me of you and I thought you should have it.”. “Why?” Asked a confused Kareema. “Because it’s beautiful.” Kenyon responded with a smile.

As Kenyon walked away, Kareema stood up and wiped the tears from her eyes as she stood with the dandelion in her hand. This moment gave her a feeling of unexpected enthusiasm that she had never felt before. It was as if everything bad inside that she previously felt was taken out and replaced with the warmth of encouragement. She wondered if she would ever feel this type of encouragement again.

13 years later when she was 17 years old, Kareema had grown to be a beautiful young woman. As the years had gone by she had slowly learned to appreciate the beauty of her dark shiny skin, realizing that it was not a flaw, but a feature. Kareema also came to learn that though she was appreciating her beauty that did not mean the rest of the world was going to share her feelings. During her senior year in high school Kareema entered a beauty pageant in her hometown. In a sea of White female beauty queens she was the only Black woman in the running. There was a lot of positive regard for her running, but there was also a lot of skepticism. She was hearing the word going around that they were not going to allow a Black woman to win this pageant, no matter how stunningly beautiful she may be.

To a big degree Kareema knew this was true, but nothing was going to stop her from going forward in this pageant. When it was all said and done, Kareema finished as a finalist in the pageant, but she did not win the reigning crown. Still, she was not bitter and held no resentment. She was very proud of herself because of the beauty she knew she held inside and out. For Kareema this was another valuable lesson: everyone else may not hold your beauty in the highest regard, but as long as you hold yourself in the highest regard, that is all that matters. When Kareema walked off that stage at the end of the pageant she was greeted and and congratulated by her friends and family. Their love and support for her was so profound that it made her feel like she was the pageant winner. The icing at the end of the night for her was when her boyfriend Kenyon came up to her and gave her a dandelion as a congratulations, this warmed her heart.

Fast forward to the present day and a 25 year old Kareema is standing in a field of flowers, they resemble the flower her husband Kenyon gave her when they first met, though not exactly the same. Even though some things change, they still stay the same. Kareema and her husband Kenyon were now six months pregnant with a beautiful baby on the way. In this sunny valley of flowers Kareema caressed her pregnant belly with appreciation for the journey of love for which she has been on.

Since her years as a baby, Kareema had been given every reason not to love herself. Yet, she was still surrounded by people who loved her like her lifelong best friend and husband, Kenyon. She was and will always be beautiful, no matter what anyone else thinks. Even when others rejected her beauty and tried to declare her beauty unlovable, she found the will to see the prize in her beauty and love herself through life’s less than beautiful moments. Kareema now understood that no matter who else loves you, or does not love you, the love that matters most is the love you give yourself, all else and everyone else will fall in proper place when the time is right. Love thy self.

Short StoryLove
25

About the Creator

Joe Patterson

Hi I'm Joe Patterson. I am a writer at heart who is a big geek for film, music, and literature, which have all inspired me to be a writer. I rap, write stories both short and long, and I'm also aspiring to be an author and a filmmaker.

Reader insights

Outstanding

Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

Top insights

  1. On-point and relevant

    Writing reflected the title & theme

  2. Easy to read and follow

    Well-structured & engaging content

  3. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

  1. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

  2. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  3. Eye opening

    Niche topic & fresh perspectives

  4. Expert insights and opinions

    Arguments were carefully researched and presented

  5. Masterful proofreading

    Zero grammar & spelling mistakes

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Comments (15)

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  • olymoolla2 months ago

    You write very well please visit my vocal id and leave a comment about how I write stories and how I write stories

  • ALBERT NYARKO2 months ago

    I like your ambition as a creative person because it takes high sense of creativity to bring whatever conceived in the mind (heart) into hand (reality)

  • sudip tarafder2 months ago

    Congrats! I enjoyed it!’

  • Anna 2 months ago

    Congrats on Top Story!🥳

  • RL Stevenson2 months ago

    Congratulations on TS, Joe! I love the steady progression of growth, tenacity, and self affirmation in the lead character. It's a sad commentary on the state of race affairs in the world we live in, but true love and positivity conquers all! Thank you for sharing.

  • Carol Townend2 months ago

    This is beautiful; as I always say, love and beauty are more than skin deep. I think black women should be noticed more today, and I am hopeful that the world might some day change their views and remember that black people, no matter what, are still human with feelings. I know many beautiful black women, but sadly they don't feel it because society doesn't always treat them that way.

  • Ashley Shiflett2 months ago

    Congrats on top story!! Well deserved.

  • Babs Iverson2 months ago

    Fabulous!!!! Loving it!!! 💕♥️♥️ Congratulations onTop Story too!!!

  • Test2 months ago

    Impressive effort! Keep up the phenomenal work—congratulations!

  • Cathy holmes2 months ago

    Congrats on the TS.

  • ROCK 2 months ago

    Brilliantly uplifting; dandelions are the perfect flower as they resonate strength, are edible and keep coming back. I can see and feel so much sunshine and love in every word.

  • sleepy drafts2 months ago

    Oh, this is so beautiful. You've told this magnificently. 💓 I love the throughline of the dandelion. My heart glowed at its first appearance with, "This reminded me of you." Gorgeous.

  • Cathy holmes2 months ago

    This is beautiful. Well done, Joe.

  • Julia Schulz2 months ago

    Lovely story, Joe!

  • Tiffany Gordon 2 months ago

    Beautiful & Inspiring work! Go Joe! 😁

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