Exposing Myself…finding me

I have a confession, since the age of 15, I have worn make-up almost daily. Now that is funny because I grew up with a mother who rarely wore anything other than lipstick, in fact it was only when she was in the midst of battling cancer and coping with hair loss and a host of other side effects from chemo did she start wearing makeup.

In my case I initially started wearing make-up because it was fun and then somewhere between 16-20, it became my mask, a way to hide me and present myself as whoever I wanted to be. When wearing a full mask aka face full of makeup I could be bold, I could be sassy, I guess I felt I could be all the things I was not when I was bare faced… exposed.

However a few weeks ago as we are dealing with what seems to be a rather hot and humid summer, I realized my face was breaking out in pimples and at 35 pimples are not something I want to deal with. So I showered one day, put my locs up and didn’t bother to put on my normal foundation/powder, instead I just put on some lipstick and was ready to go. I did it the next day and after a few days, the pimples went away, but instead of putting on my mask aka make-up, I decided against it and now I can’t tell you when the last time I put on makeup aside from lipstick.. I love my MAC lipsticks, you will have to pry em out of my hands.

Now what started out as a way to get rid of pesky pimples actually has grown into something much larger, see when I turned 35 early this year, it was like something went off inside of me and there has been what I call a shift in my life. Part of that shift has been studying feminist spirituality, reaching my weight loss goal after 2 long years on Weight Watchers but really just this mental shift where I feel like I love me, I know me and no matter what anyone says its all good. No longer do I get upset at other people and hang on to negativity, I brush that shit off now as fast as I flush mini-me’s poop down the toilet. Let that shit go. My love/hate relationship with family is mostly over, they are who they are and I cannot change them all I can do is change my way of dealing with them.

No, this has been the year that I have come into my own as a woman, even though I had my first baby at 19, its only now that I can say I am a grown woman. I suspect that while I felt the change this year, in  some ways I think it started with my Mom’s passing 4 years ago.

As a grown woman, I no longer need a mask, because I can be bold, sassy and anything else I want or need to be without hiding. Though should I want to put on a mask, that too is ok, but in wearing the mask, I need to be clear on why I am doing it.

For me makeup was my clutch, my mask but perhaps you have something that you to hide behind, perhaps now is a good time to decide whether its time to let it go.