Embracing Self Love – My story

Embracing Self Love


by Hetty Driessen

How often in life do we get told:”Just Love your Self”, without anyone really telling or showing us how to. It is for a lot of people the hardest thing to do, to be, to give to Self. Maybe we were told that it was selfish to do things for self, be themselves and to give and or want for self.

Self Love to me means, honouring what I am feeling, listening to my heart and following through on my heart’s desire.  Also it is important to nurture myself.

Those who know my “heart” story can just read the purple bits, but I promise I kept it light and have thrown some humour in there.

I learned the hard way. In June/July 2004, when I was still very much a people-pleaser, doing for others without giving myself a lot of thought, I ended up having a major Angina attack at Kuala Lumpur Airport, on my way home to Australia from visiting family in Holland, just after 5Am in the morning with no-one around, a lot of hand luggage and no knowledge of local language. A one-eyed Aussie, he had a patch over his right eye, from outback Queensland came up to me and asked: ”Are you alright mate”? I immediately trusted him and asked him to look after my luggage, while I went to the bathroom. (strong hint: if you have pain in your chest and down your left arm AND your body wants to eliminate, call 911 or 000, but call for help, as you are having a heart-attack). In the mean time he got help from a cleaning lady, who in her best English asked me:“Ma’m are you alright? Your husband says you need help” (Holy Dooley, I got married in the last few minutes). The Dr finally came at 7am, so I had been in excruciating pain for nearly 2 hours. He put me on ECG, found some irregularities in the valves and gave me some angina tablets. After a lot of begging he let me fly after a promise that I would see my doctor in Oz on my return. I was wheel-chaired around from then on and wasn’t allowed to lift anything. I sent a text message to my girlfriend back home, who would pick me up, that I might arrive like that in Brisbane and that my bags were being carried. Her humorous reply was:” Geez you’d do anything to get your bags carried and to be wheeled around”. Had to laugh.

After an eventful weekend I finally got to my doctor and after a blood-test it was confirmed that I had had at least one heart attack and he wanted to admit me to hospital immediately.

Emergency knew I was coming, as my Dr had faxed the details, by the time I got there. I was admitted on the Tuesday, stayed for a few days and I was supposed to go home on the Saturday and to wait for a call from PA Hospital, Brisbane, the nearest hospital, where they could do a Angiogram.

Saturday came and the doctors had forgotten about me and the nurse couldn’t sign me out, so I stayed, helped a woman with heart problems, who had picked up a stomach bug as well, so poor bugger was eliminating from both ends. I gave her lots of Reiki. Then there was the elderly lady with dementia, who kept walking away and into the men’s ward with bare bottom showing out of her hospital gown. It was hilarious. I kept chasing her and bringing her back. There were only 2 nurses on for 4 x 6 wards with 8 new arrivals. They were not coping and I felt OK at the time, doing a 6-8 hour shift.

That night I had another attack and when the Cardiologist came around the next day, he immediately transferred me to a private room and said there was no way I was going home, as he couldn’t trust me to take it easy, so I would leave GC for PA in ambulance when they were ready for me. On hindsight I could see that “Divine Spirit/Creator” was at work here, so that things would get moving faster. They knew I couldn’t just lay back and do nothing while there was mayhem on the ward or work to be done for my clients.

I knew I had 6 weeks work waiting for me, which was going to take care of my maxed out credit card. At that time I was a mobile bookkeeper by daytime (healer/teacher the other times) and June/July was my busiest time, as it was End of Financial Year in Australia. No work, no money. With no money in the bank, stress became a huge factor causing more attacks. Friends came from everywhere to help, some paid a week’s rent, others paid the phone bill, others again paid further weeks rent and things were taken care of without me even knowing. My Beloved De La Salle Brother Brian walked, or more like shuffled as he was recovering from cancer treatment and had Parkinson’s,  6 huge blocks from Bauer ST to GC Hospital (Southport) every day and collected my washing and had that done for me. The same happened in Brisbane PA Hospital, where one of the social workers took care of that. These amazing deeds done by people I hardly knew. It was very humbling.

I had to learn the very hard way to surrender to Holy Spirit/God/Creator, Universe, by whatever name you know it by, but it was sooo challenging as I had ALWAYS looked after myself and was very independent. I had to let go and let God and ALLOW people to actually truly love me and take care of me.

Then the day of the angiogram came. That procedure fascinated me, but they didn’t do anything and nobody told me what was going on for two days. I was beside myself and then finally the head cardiologist came and told me that I had to have at least a 3-Bypass, which turned in to a fiver. They scheduled the surgery for July 2nd, my actual 53rd birthday. I asked them to postpone it, as my brother died of a heart-attack on his 53rd birthday and my sister died soon after her 53rd birthday. I just wanted to break the mould. If I was gonna go, that was fine, but was not taking any chances. It was re-scheduled for July 6th.

On July 2nd, my then choir buddies called me for my birthday on the mobile and sang “I’ll be there” in 4 or 5 part harmony for me, which had me bawling.

ICU was a nightmare, but that’s another story and no fun at all. I did everything the nurses had told me and I was the only patient operated on in 2 days that went home after 5 days. Not home as such, as I lived by myself and you can’t do, nor are you allowed to do a darn thing for 5 weeks.   The Aged care place where I had been the administrator for 4 years offered me a Respite room with full care for the 5 weeks and in return I started working within a couple of days, first only a couple of hours a day. It was amazing. I was just soo blessed and soo looked after. Thank You. Thank You.

What this has taught me is to honour myself a heck of a lot more than I used to. I allow people to help me, I can now even ask people to help me. I’ve learned to say NO, when needed and not please everyone else and putting my needs last. Now I do what I like to do and am passionate about. At the time I also created bookkeeping clients who allowed me to be flexible with time and work when it suited me.

This episode in my life has been all about Self Loving, Self honouring, Self Respecting, Self Accepting and allowing others “in”, but it has to come from within first. How can we expect anyone to love, honour, respect, nurture and accept us for who we are, if we don’t do that for ourselves.

If we belief we are all a Spark of God/Creator, so who am I to deny others to wish to love and take care of me and in fact actually, in this case, I was  denying God, so to speak.

For the ThetaHealers® among you, please check and see how you are doing in these “Self Love” departments and choose to change this for the better.

My Reiki Master’s Metaphysical response to Heart By-Passes was What Love are you By-passing? In my case it was 5 of them and it took me a while to find the 5 Loves I was by-passing. After being hurt a few times early in life, I found it challenging to allow me to love a “special” person and receive that same love in return, which also didn’t give me the opportunity to have children. I didn’t really love ME, or the Goddess in ME, nor did I allow my creative ME to play and explore, nor did I love the “Little girl” in ME and allow it to blossom. I had shut her out at a very young age. (Not anymore, we have great fun together. She and I are a great team when I show the passionate/playful teacher that I am during seminars)

I thought to be a giving person was, being a loving one, hence I always gave to others. As long as everybody else was happy, so was I, I thought. Not so, I found out the “hard” way.

I have since changed that program, as everyone is responsible for their own happiness.

I learned about Self Love by having this “Mack-truck” experience. May yours be a gentler experience than mine.

May you all find True Self Love, as from that space you look at the world without judgement, without resentment, without fear, only with compassion.

Healing Blessings to you All from

Your humble and forever growing/evolving servant, who admits wholeheartedly that she’s still a “Work In Progress”.  

Hetty Driessen – ThetaGateway