One of my biggest obstacles to accepting myself has been my skin. My skin is what launched me into my exploration of nutrition which I'll get into later. Once I hit puberty my skin started to set off blasts of irritation that turned into unsightly pimples. My already tender self-esteem was slowly widdled down. I have vivid memories of being bullied in sixth grade. I had changed schools and was definitely in an awkward what is happening to my body phase. There is one memory that stands out. We were on the bus getting ready to go on our sixth grade trip and I was already disappointed I wasn't going with my former school. There was the roaring of chatter ringing through out the bus and I was talking with my friend to the left of me. A boy in the seat in front of me turned around and called me pizza face. I was shocked and didn't know what to do. I just took it in. I became more and more ashamed of my skin over the years. In my bedroom I would come home from school put sunglasses on and look at myself in the mirror. This would help blur out my rupturing skin and I would pretend I was beautiful for a while. I fantasize what it would be like to feel like that in real life.
I tried many things to help my skin. Antibiotics, accutane, retin-A, proactive and the list goes on and on. Some would help for a while but then I was back to the same old thing. I even had a nurse that told me, "you'll never have clear skin." Disappointing and so inappropriate. One day I came upon an article that was about a clear skin diet. I was intrigued. I tried it, I noticed a difference. Then I had a tragedy in my life and wove off the track. Then through the years nutrition was brought back into my life. Living in Maui I was surround by beauty, fresh foods and many healthy living people. I came back to the main land and found myself interested in a local holistic nutrition school which I followed with a couple more nutrition schools. My interest was sparked. My skin would go in and out of breakouts. People have their opinions what my skin needs which became daunting. So here comes the acceptance.
I still sometimes have breakouts but what I've realized is maybe accepting myself just as I am will heal my skin. This may sound like silly woo woo stuff but I think there is some truth to it. Over the years I think I've taken all the tall tales I've heard from others and been ashamed. Also, I think apart of me has hid behind my skin eruptions because then I don't have to accept or be who I am. Hanging my head low I can define myself by my outward appearance. I buy things that will fix my outward appearance but maybe fixing my inward love of myself can solve it. I can continue to be the person that sees myself through my sunglasses because I'm scared to see myself right now. Where do you put guidelines around accepting yourself? Only when I lose weight will I be amazing, only when I have that high powered job, only when I publish my book, only when I buy my new car, only when I'm in a relationship? You get the point.
I challenge myself and you to accept yourself now! When we get all that we want there's no guarantee that we will like ourselves more. There is only now. What if the key to getting where we want is changing the inner pathways to reflect our self love? Accepting ourselves doesn't spew an inflated ego it exudes love, happiness and who we are meant to be. Lets take a fast from thinking there is something wrong with us and accept ourselves just as we are. This reminds me of Bridget Jones' Diary where Mr. Darcy tells her, "I like you just as you are." Couldn't we all be so lucky to love others and ourselves like that. It can be just that simple. Accepting ourselves just as we are can bring about the outer reflection we are desiring.
1 bunch of asparagus, ends cut off then cut in half
1 tablespoon of olive oil
zest of one lemon
1 clove of minced garlic
1 cup of cherries, pitted and cut in half (or cut in chunks)
1 shallot, minced
1/4 cup of slivered almonds
Dash of salt
1. Heat pan to medium heat and add a drizzle of olive oil, enough to coat the pan. Cut ends of asparagus then cut in half. Zest the lemon and mince the garlic. Add asparagus to pan with lemon zest and garlic. Cook for 3-5 minutes until bright green and tender. Place on plate and set aside.
2. Pit and cut cherries. (I realized after making this that the cherries might be better cut in smaller pieces but it is up to you. I would suggest cutting in fourths.) Mince shallot. Add a teaspoon of olive oil to pan used to cook asparagus. Add shallot; cook for 1-2 minutes. Add cherries; cook 1-2 minutes (just to warm up).
3. Sprinkle asparagus with salt and pour cherries over the top of the asparagus. Sprinkle the slivered almonds over the top and serve warm.
This is a simple recipe but the flavors really compliment each other. Enjoy!