“Love myself I do. Not everything, but I love the good as well as the bad. I love my crazy lifestyle, and I love my hard discipline. I love my freedom of speech and the way my eyes get dark when I’m tired. I love that I have learned to trust people with my heart, even if it will get broken. I am proud of everything that I am and will become.” – Johnny Weir
I have to admit that I am not a figure skating fan and had no idea who Johnny Weir was. But when I ran across this quote, I couldn’t help but marveling at the power of these words. I wonder how much our lives would change if we embraced and incorporated these thoughts into our lives.
First, Johnny states he loves himself, something we must learn to do before we can truly give love to others. We cannot give something away that we do not possess. He cleverly states he doesn’t ‘love’ everything about himself, but I ‘love the good as well as the bad.’ I think this jeu de mots means that while each part of him may not be perfect, he accepts even those parts that are frustrating to him. This is difficult for many of us. Sure, we should try to improve the parts of ourselves that we do not like. But accepting the ‘bad’ parts of our character, body, mind and habits is a critical skill, as well, if we truly wish to fully love ourselves.
Next, the figure skater says he loves his lifestyle, discipline, speech and tired eyes. Interestingly, he picks four items that someone could easily see as negatives: a “crazy” lifestyle, having to constantly be disciplined, freedom of speech (which frequently lands us in trouble – or at least criticized) and dark, tired eyes. I have never heard anybody else — ever — say they love their own dark, tired eyes. But Johnny has found four things that are certainly taxing on occasion, at minimum, and has accepted them, embraced them, and loves them.
Mr. Weir says he has learned to trust people even though he knows the heart-rending consequence that will occasionally come from doing so. This is an area where most of us struggle. Why give all of ourselves when it will sometimes lead to heartbreak? Because our love and greatest joy is found in doing so. The only thing worse than to have love and lost . . . is to never have loved.
Finally, Johnny tells us he is proud of who is he right this minute and will always be proud of who he is. Even if we disregard all the other beautiful sentiments in his quote and fully embraced this final sentence, our lives would change immeasurably. We would be full of love and joy. That is the truth.
Thank you, Johnny Weir. I am still not a skating fan. But I am unequivocally a fan of the way you live life.