A part of me refused to give up on my hope for a peaceful life and to be valued and liked for who I was. In this painting titled "Valor" I painted the part of me that chose to look forward to a better time where my spirit could soar and fly free without being constantly sabotaged by criticism either from others or from myself. I hadn't yet figured out how to live that life, but I knew that change was necessary. An ember inside me refused to burn out. I had started to believe that I deserved more.
When we realize that we are strong enough to have survived and maybe even thrived through adversity, we begin to see ourselves in a new light, as survivors - maybe even warriors. Once we begin to believe that we deserve to be treated with love, we also decide that we won't allow others to continue to hurt us. When these truths combine to give us the strength needed make true changes in our lives we are on the path to loving ourselves.