When I was young, I had fought a battle against acne. It was a constant source of embarrassment and frustration in my teenage years. It severely affected my self-confidence and self-esteem. Every time I got bullied because of my skin problem, I acted cool and pretended that I wasn’t hurt, but I cried myself to sleep every night. There was even a certain point when I could not look at other people in the eyes because of my insecurities. I wanted to isolate myself from the rest of the world. It was a terrible emotional struggle.
Not having much, I spent most of my allowance looking for some sort of solution to my skin woes, buying beauty products that promised magic. Unfortunately, nothing worked. I wish I have photos to show how severe it was but I hated taking selfies back then. I didn’t even want to look at myself in the mirror. When we had to take a group photo in school, I would put make up on and butter my face with every concealer known to mankind.
Though it caused me heartaches, dealing with acne was such a very humbling experience. I don’t wish it on anyone, but I won’t say that I regret having it in my life either. I never thought I would say this now but in fact, my heart is grateful for that terrible experience. I’m thankful for my acne for several reasons. For one, it sent me a message that I had to change my unhealthy lifestyle and that I had to be kind and more generous to my own body. Also, it taught me a lesson that hiding is not the answer to problems. You can’t hide from your problem especially if your problem is your face. Hiding behind a thick layer of make up is not the cure. It only makes the problem worse. No matter how hard it is, you have to be courageous enough to take the first step. You have to understand that healing takes time. Lastly, I’m thankful for my acne because it was during my ugliest days that someone came and made me feel beautiful and loved. It made me realize that the people who really matter only see the beautiful in you. No matter how unattractive you think you are, there will be someone special who will love you genuinely, who will appreciate your personality more than your looks, and who will think that you’re pretty amazing despite your imperfections.
It was my Korean friend/suitor (now my husband) who had helped me win the battle. Hmmm.. I shall say he was the fairy who brought me the magic water from Kimchilandia, the land of ‘magaganda’ (beautiful people). LOL. When we started dating, I worried that he would dash his eyes out and run as far away from me as he could. However, what happened was the opposite. He always wanted to be with me, proudly holding my hand on our dates. For the first time in many years, someone made me feel beautiful. Yes, despite the raging acne on my face.
On the day he explained and demonstrated the (long) steps of Korean skincare routine, he asked me to wipe my make up off to give the products a try on my skin. My heart went BOOM BOOM BOOM! *Sigh* It took me quite A LOT of courage to show him my bare face. It felt like undressing live on national TV. I was so embarrassed that I wished a monster would come and swallow me alive! But then he looked deeply into my eyes, touched my face with both hands and said, “Jagiya, you are beautiful. And you can get through this.” That’s when I started to believe that love is blind. I mean, true. Haha! It does not see scars, blemishes and ugliness as seen by the human eyes; it sees beyond the surface. Who would’ve ever thought that someone would fall in love with a walking gigantic pimple! Hihihi! 😛
If you are suffering from acne, I hope you find encouragement in the fact that it is just 100% exterior. While it may dull your beauty at one point in your life, acne does not extinguish it. It actually refines and enhances your inner beauty. It lets you discover your other strengths and unique talents, and develop your beauty in different ways. It also helps you learn to see beauty in people and things that are often overlooked.
Cheer up, girl! Having acne doesn’t mean the end of your love life. If a man truly loves you, he will care about the pain you’re going through and find ways to help you. The ugly zits on your face won’t keep the right man away. Remember, acne does not ruin the beauty that is within you. It actually helps you see the genuine people that truly care for you. 🙂