For some reason, my face decided this week (and especially this weekend) was the ideal time to break out. I’ve always had a difficult time with acne and because I’m probably a tad bit too vain, I’ve also always worn makeup.
The act of putting on makeup itself is tiresome. If I was one of those lucky gals who just woke up and went, I would get a whole lot more sleep during the work week. The process is long and often, I feel like I’m a painter –but not one of the talented ones. It’s basically paint-by-the-imperfections until everything is covered up and I feel pretty enough to face the world.
Not only is acne bad for the self-confidence, but it can be extremely painful. Especially when you get the big suckers like I did this weekend. They pop up in the most annoying of places (on your cheeks, so when you smile, they get even bigger), and if you brush up against them or go to wipe your face, it just flat out hurts.
Because I’ve been trying to be more in-tune with myself and watch the language I use to communicate with myself every day, I’ve also been more acutely aware of the way I walk, the way I talk, the way I look, and the way I think I’m perceived by others. You’d think the journey to self-love would make me throw out my self-hating-habits and instantly let go, but if anything, it’s brought them to the surface (literally with these zits) and make me face what makes me the most insecure.
My friend, J (remember him, who got all those flowers?) asked me to go shopping with him on Saturday, and I reluctantly agreed. Not because I didn’t want to see J or because he’s not a great shoe-finding buddy, but because I felt so gross from having a massive break out. I ended up piling on more makeup than I usually do and I tried my best not to wear red so it wouldn’t bring attention to the redness on my face.
After I was sure he had noticed the huge cluster of zits on my cheek, I finally said, “I just love how I’ve broken out this weekend.” He looked up at me puzzled, and said, “What do you mean?” Shocked, I replied, “Don’t you see these awful zits on my face?” Simply, he said, “Nah. Hadn’t noticed. You look pretty.”
Given, J, always will compliment me –but it really opened my eyes to how harsh I can be on myself. Everyone, even those damn Victoria’s Secret models, get some problematic skin issues sometimes. By nature, human beings are far from perfect. We’re meant to make mistakes, have flaws, and work on our confidence. Having insecurities doesn’t make us weak, it just makes us normal.
Of course, because of the recovery, I thought about how hard I’ve been on myself just in the past week.
Anytime a negative thought or worry came into my mind, I instantly yelled internally “Lindsay! You’re doing the 12 Steps, remember? Stop this!” Even though I came up with a kind and soothing mantra, my instant reaction was far from forgiving.
Instead of working on why I was having that thought or fear, I automatically tried to “cover it up” by pushing it out of my mind and not giving myself time to figure out why I was being negative in the first place. If you will, I was applying makeup before I gave the zit time to heal. I was putting on mascara while my eye was still red, lipstick on my lips while they were still chapped, and blush on my cheeks when they were already flushed.
This process, this recovery, isn’t going to be a walk in the park. And I have to remember to be my own best friend –encouraging, patient, and gentle. If a thought comes to my mind, instead of letting myself get all worked up and mad for not “recovering quick enough” –I need to let the thought cycle through, tell myself its okay to have the thought, and then remind myself to “Have faith. All is unfolding as it should.”
Before I can truly believe my bad attitude can be turned around, I have to let the thoughts and emotions come as they naturally do, so I can understand why I’m having such a hard time. I can’t skip forward to peace and clarity, if I don’t have a little bit of bumps and pain.
I think it’s time to tell my Mars in Aries to just calm down a little bit. All in due time, all in due time.