I have never minded having scars on my body. I always considered them a sign that I was living life, non-superficial and just being me. They were some of my stories, my history. Some scars I can tell you exactly how or why I had them; bitter or sweet. Other scars were just plain mysteries that I have no clue how they came to be part of me.
But when it came to scars on my face, that was a whole different mindset. I hated any scars that were on my face. After all the things that could, did and still do occur on my face, having a scar was just too traumatic. With my family genetics and my own OCD, I caused more chaos on my poor face then I could have ever imagined. Anyone who knew me back in high school can vouch that my senior year, I broke out with a horrible case of acne. There were other facial issues I was prone to and the combination just helped to deplete what confidence I had.
A little background. Yes, my OCD was the root of this terrible breakout and the antagonist to some of my current day breakouts (that and hormones). I was so concerned about how oily my skin was and I knew very little in the ways of the necessity of oil in the skin. So I would wash my face, then use astringent, then rubbing alcohol in attempt to dry the oil off the skin on my face. Plus, I never used facial lotion. I thought it would compound the oily skin issue. This, of course, caused my skin to go into hyper drive and produce twice as much oil, trying to replace what it lost. In my early 20s, a dermatologist told me that the aggressive cleaning ritual I had been doing basically stripped the top protective layer of skin from my face. This is why the breakout was so all over the place and so red; aggitated.
I explain all this, to explain how my mindset of not having facial scars and wishing for beautiful skin was so different from the way I thought of the skin on the rest of my body. But, I have one of my children to thank for opening my eyes to this unrealistic thinking.
As my daughter grew older, she began playing various Xbox and computer games. On these games, she could create her characters to look how she wanted. She was always adding scars and other imperfections to her characters faces. I had asked her once why she did that. Her response was that the scars and imperfections were beautiful. I was floored. As time went by, I started to realize that she was right.
I had always loved the scars on the rest of my body. Why would I not love the scars on my face? They were just more stories; more adventures; more of living and loving life. They were part of me, who I am now and how I became me. As that mind set changed, I also began working on loving my imperfections. Now that’s a feat in itself, too! I have some imperfections; mentally and physically! 😂
No matter what scars, imperfections, blemishs or differences I have, there is no reason I should feel ashamed. They are stories of my battles; of my living; of my humanness; of my pushing through and forward. I will put a smile on this scarred face and keep loving life!
Love yourself, scars and all.