Telling the Truth

I think its time I come clean with all of you; myself included. I write a lot about body image, positive self-talk, and self-esteem. These topics have been the primary focus on my blog, while also following my personal journey towards optimal health. Ill be honest. Im really good at writing about how to love yourself, and how to crawl out from negative thinking patterns. However, when it comes to myself, Im not able to follow my own advice. Im sure Im not alone in this, but I wanted to be honest: Im struggling real hard to love myself.

This has been an on-going issue for me throughout the years given my history with my body image, but the last year has been the worst it has ever been. In the last year, for many reasons, my body has gone through a lot of physical changes:

After 6 years, I went off of birth control. I went on the pill to regulate my hormones to clear up my skin (which it did!) But, in an effort to fully encompass a Paleo lifestyle, I decided to change my health and beauty habits to a more natural approach. Plus, I didnt like the fact that I was pumping my body full of hormones and messing up its natural balance. Its been about a year off the pill, and my skin is disgusting. Ive tried to be patient, but its hard. This is my face. Its out in the open for everyone to see. Nevertheless the fact that Im about to be 28 years-old and I have terrible skin, I keep wondering when it will get better. Every morning when I wake up, I go and see if it is any better, and I usually wind up disappointed. Needless to say, this is taking a serious toll on my self-esteem.
Ive gained fat over the last year. I have no idea how much because as you know, I dont believe in the scale. However, I believe this is from being in Ketosis for an extended period of time and then finally coming out of it and eating the right amount of carbohydrates for my body. This has caused an imbalance for my adrenals and thyroid, as well. It is a tough pill to swallow, because I have battled my weight all my life. I tried to do everything right last summer to lose fat, and now I look horrible. Im not comfortable in my body, I hate the way clothes fit (or dont fit) and I am utterly disgusted with my body.

Yes, these are all physical changes Ive noticed. Yes, there is more to life than physical attributes. But, I have not been kind to myself or understanding. I wake up each day and stand in front of the mirror picking myself apart. Ive been doing everything right (for real this time) and my body just doesnt seem to be responding. All that said, this is why Im having a hard time loving myself and accepting myself as I am in this moment.

Ive pretty much stopped looking at myself in mirrors altogether because Im so exhausted of picking myself apart and looking at how ugly Ive gotten. Yall, Im tired! I know I have a lot of work to do. A friend pointed out to my the other day that there must be some self-love still brewing inside me and fighting to stay alive because I am doing everything I can to heal my body the natural way. That counts for something, right?

Additionally, my acupuncturist mentioned a lot of great things to me at my session the other day. I havent been going to her for a very long time, and we havent really bonded, but our relationship totally took a positive turn on Thursday. I was feeling very low, almost to the point of crying about how I looked, and she urged me to look at my value. She muttered something like, Who gives a shit that your skin is broken out? Look at the work you are doing to help people. You are truly amazing. I was so surprised by her words because, like I said, we hadnt really bonded yet. She urged me to find three things I valued about myself, daily. I told her that would be very difficult, so Ive started with one a day. On Thursday, I found that I value my voice. I was blessed with an incredible voice. On Friday, I valued the relationships I have with animals, especially cats and horses (you can make a cat-lady joke here!). Today, Saturday, I havent thought about it yet, but I am choosing to value my friendships. I think I will continue this exercise, as it seems beneficial.