You would think with yesterday’s post – I would have attempted to be a little more upbeat about my appearance.
Maybe it’s the grime in New York or my hormones are all screwy or I’m PMSing, but for some reason my face keeps breaking out awful. Even worse than it has ever been in the past. I figure, I’m 22 years old, when does this preteen/teen zit-face crap stop? I mean, seriously? I go to an interview or attend a networking event and I have such a lovely red pimple on my cheek? So professional.
So of course, I wear makeup. And I’ve gotten really good at picking makeup that doesn’t look cakey, but of course, with a zit, you put more on (even though you’re not supposed to) to cover it up. End result? I feel like I’m unattractive. And thus – my confidence goes down.
I woke up Friday morning with a new sucker on the left side of my cheek. And just by the feel of it and how it is starting to sprout, I know it’s going to be a big one. Years of getting them teaches you how to prepare for them. So, already, just by looking in the mirror when I get up, I feel awful. And then, I get mad at myself for feeling this way when I know I’m trying not to with this journey.
I put on my makeup, go through the motions, and already feel oily and gross –but I put on a cute outfit and just go for it. By lunchtime, I’ve seen myself in the bathroom mirror several times (thank you, Starbucks) – and each time I find a different flaw. I quickly combat my thoughts with positive reinforcements, but it fails to make me feel prettier.
I go out to H&M to buy a new jacket (the cold weather finally got me), where I was bumped into excessively and got further annoyed. After I paid, I made my way to Guy & Gallard for their soup and half-sandwich deal that I love so much. While I was paying, this rather attractive man started chattin’ it up with the very-obnoxious girl in front of me. She had tanning-bed written all over her and she was leaving nothing up to mystery…if you know what I mean. And he was intrigued? I then felt more unattractive and stomped out of the store, nearly spilling my soup in my carry-out bag.
As I walked down the street, I noticed that no man took note of me. That’s a lie – no man I would remotely be interested in took note of me. I started to wonder, why don’t I turn heads? Is it because I wear makeup? Because I’m not hanging out? It is 50-degree weather, why would I bare-it-all? Is it because of this massive oncoming zit? Guys like natural, we all know, but what if you don’t like how you look naturally?
Again, I say: ugghhhh.
I walk up the four flights of stairs up to my office, literally stomping as hard as I can – because I can and no one is around to notice the temper-tantrum I’m throwing for myself. I even half-way punch a wall on the way up (because I can’t really punch) and then get petty with my co-worker J via IM when I sit down to eat.
And then, as I’m yelling at myself, putting myself down – I stopped.
I stopped analyzing and dissecting myself. I stopped looking at the mirror and searching for reasons to pick out flaws. I stopped getting angry because some man didn’t look at me. I stopped making myself believe that I was not worthy of attention because of a zit.
I simply said, “Lindsay, this is you. It isn’t changing. You are beautiful and if you wear makeup, you wear it. Your hair gets blown in the wind, so be it. If you get a pimple, you do. It won’t be forever. If a guy can’t take you or find you attractive when you’re having a rough breakout or it is cold outside, then screw him. You deserve much more than that. So stop it. Go rock out in your heels in the street and accept yourself, your zits, and your insecurities. You got this.”
And just like that, with that boost of momentum, I listened. The negativity slowed down, I touched up my makeup. I breathed. I carried on…
…all the way to the Flat Iron district to a double sushi-date with drinks. And I laughed, I smiled. I gave myself encouragement and I told those me-hating thoughts exactly where they could go.
Yes, ladies (and gentlemen, if you’re reading) – I surrendered.
Guess there is a first time for everything. Onto Step 4? Hmm. Let’s see.