I took one look at my face in the bathroom mirror and burst into giant, alligator tears. Maybe it was just a bad day. Maybe it was just bad lighting. But I’m 34. I’m a grown up for crying out loud. I didn’t think I’d still have acne at this age.
I didn’t think I’d still suffer from red marks and blackheads and giant zits at this age.
How am I supposed to fight wrinkles AND acne at the same time? Do they even make products for that?
How do you dry out your face, but still flood it with moisturizer? Am I supposed to buy two completely different skincare systems and go back and forth between the two, or use half on one side of my face and half on the opposite side? It’s like wanting to flood the Sahara and drain the Pacific with one magic product on the same face. No. Absolutely not. It ain’t happenin’.
I don’t know.
And I don’t like it.
So now, when I put on my makeup, everything is pretty much covered in concealer. Under the eyes to hide these large bags that have made their permanent residence on my face, uninvited. Thank you, precious children, for that. Maybe start sleeping in your own beds, ok?
Around my nose to lighten these dark shadows. And spotted all along my jawline and cheeks to cover up these hormonal areas that have invaded my personal space, unwelcomed, like crazy family members just randomly showing up on my welcome mat for Christmas dinner. I honestly had to switch to the cheap stuff because I was going through concealer like Beyoncé goes through outfit changes at the Grammy awards. And Dave Ramsey (aka my hubby) was absolutely not having that crap.
I shouldn’t struggle with the exact same things I struggled with at 15.
The last time my skin was clear was when I was like 6. And seriously, it was so wasted. I didn’t appreciate all of that natural glow-y complexion. I mean, where was I going? Girl Scout meetings? The play area at Burger King? “Oh Amy. Nice to see you. I love your neon tracksuit and jellies. You look like a walking Lisa Frank trapper keeper. And that skin, girl. It’s absolutely radiant. Dewey even. What are you using? Rodan + Fields? Botox? New Clarisonic brush?”
No. Such a waste. I didn’t know what a good thing I had back then. I need that skin now. I’d appreciate it now. I’d appreciate the hell out of it.
I should be over this by now.
But here we are.
Still battling acne at this age.
And insecurity. And fitting in. And being left out. And comparison. And not being good enough. And not being pretty enough. Or skinny enough. And not having the right outfit to wear to the party. (Seriously, do I really need $100 workout pants to sit around and drink non-fat lattes and make random trips through the dollar area at Target and hang out at the slide area at the local playground?)
And while we’re at it, may I just say that I also did not think I’d still need a push-up bra at this age. I mean…I need it for different reasons now than I did back then. I’m not cramming wads of toilet paper into the cups in the girls’ bathroom anymore, but I still need one. And it’s still an issue.
We deal with so many of the same problems we dealt with as teenagers. But we don’t have to approach them with the same mentality. We don’t have to approach them with the same maturity.
We can approach them with wisdom and strength and grit. We can approach them with this “I know what I’m doing now and I know who I am” knowledge. Get out of my way. Now.
We can choose to continue to cover our blemishes up, we can choose to continue to purchase concealer and foundation and powder like we did back when we were sporting perms and giant bangs and listening to “I Want it That Way” by the Backstreet Boys on our DiscMans, or we can choose to get deep, down to the root of the problem.
We can choose to heal this time.
We’re older. We’re more grounded. We’re more together (some days anyway). We know our beauty isn’t found in our reflection. We know our worth isn’t secured through an invitation. We know our value isn’t established in being well-liked. We can purchase self-help books from Amazon Prime and have them delivered two days later. We can talk to our friends about our struggles, we can lean on our loved ones for support, we can see a counselor or a therapist or a Psychologist for direction.
Yes, we still have some of the same struggles we had when we were in junior high, but we don’t have to fight them as junior high kids anymore. We can fight them as adults. We can fight them as women. Wonder women, who know who they are, what they are doing and where they are going.
So put your hands down, step away from the mirror, and stop picking on those pimples. But most of all, stop picking on yourself.
I love red lipstick, graphic tees, and Diet Dr. Pepper a little more than I probably should. Most days you can find me lounging in sweatpants, running kids from one place to the other like a crazy person. My family is my home and my passion is helping women find courage, confidence, and the deep-rooted knowledge that their life has a deep and significant purpose. Come follow me at In & Out Beauty by Amy.