Acne or no Acne, I am beautiful!!

Recently, I read Kambua Manundu’s story on her struggle with Acne and how she overcame it. It was really beautiful and humbling that she would share that because sometimes we never know the hidden struggles people go through. Thanks Kambua for sharing that! 🙂

Well,I related 100%.I have had acne so I would read every word of her story and go like ‘Oh my goodness!Me too!Yeees!I know how that feels!I know you’re probably wondering what Acne is.Acne is a skin condition  that occurs when the hair follicles become clogged with dead skin cells and oil from the skin,caused by overproduction of sebum, or ‘oil’by the sebaceous glands.It is often characterized by blackheads, whiteheads, greasy skin. It is quite severe in some cases.(You can google for more info).It’s what is commonly known as ‘adolescent pimples‘.

For me,I always enjoyed smooth acne free skin until class six when suddenly pimples started appearing on my face. At first I wasn’t that scared because I knew they’d go away,but later on I started getting worried because they didn’t seem to leave.Plus talk about the self prescribed doctors who’d scare me more by telling me all manner of things;avoid fries and oily foods to chocolate;I even remember applying lemon everyday on my face,goodness!it was horrible.

Slowly it started getting to me.I remember I started avoiding people especially boys.I was always so self-conscious especially when talking to boys from my class.Mind you I was very very outgoing and confident.I loved attention.Now I started avoiding any form of attention.Then the acne spread to my arms,chest and back. I felt hopeless. I remember using countless soaps, to drugs,I even got vitamin C supplements,but nothing changed.

Fast forward to highschool, this time my self esteem had really dropped.I never thought I was beautiful. I became this shy,quiet,insecure girl,which was never truly who I was.I never went out for school functions because I never believed I was beautiful enough.I could never out do the other prettier girls.(haha lies from the devil!)Coupled with other stresses my grades went down and I felt really hopeless. I went to see one dermatologist, who is really good,one of the best in Kenya actually, Doctor Maimba,at Doctor’s Plaza Kenyatta National Hospital,Private wing,who really helped me.(You can google him for more information) I actually started improving, but I had to stop because I couldn’t afford the treatment and at the same time I was in form 3 and fees was quite expensive. But the treatment actually worked because I remember after a week my friends from school actually started seeing the drastic change (There’s hope guys! 🙂 )

Fast forward again to campus(don’t get tired of the fast forwards lol 🙂 ) the same problem persisted.Those with acne know how weary it can make you because you’re constantly on the hunt for anything that can work,and not only work but work faster! My net history was full of acne remedies,home made acne recipes and such. I talked about it to my close friends, my mum has heard it all haha!All the while she’d tell me “No.It actually isn‘t that serious. You really shouldn‘t worry much about it“But somehow it still wasn’t enough

Besides that,the acne was on and off.There were times my face was actually not all that pimply,other times I felt like not going out till forever. Emotionally it really drained me.Roots can be deep.I remember after I stopped the treatment, I wouldn’t look at myself in the mirror.Even in campus.I’d hate even a glance at myself. I avoided anything that made me look at myself. I was ever insecure. The negative comments from people added salt to injury. I’d meet random people in town who’d ask “Nini mbaya na uso yako?”(what’s wrong with your face?)Sometimes I’d talk to someone and I’d see them really stare at my face in awe or wonder. I’d get free advice on skincare from anyone, random people I met anywhere.

But,I can’t really remember an actual turning point,but I remember telling my best friend who was really shocked because she hadn’t even noticed!Talk about love!haha!Thankyou best friend 🙂 .She later told me to pour out everything to God,the frustrations, pain everything which I did and I believe God did something. He healed me.

My confidence slowly increased, I could now look at myself in the mirror,I could even wear lipstick. I thank God for this,but I know some of you may think I’ve been on confidence level 1000 after that day.Well no.I’m not saying this to demean what God did.No.God actually did heal me I believe that completely

But,I wrote this post because sometimes we actually want things to be done how we want them to,but what if God has a different plan?Once in church we learnt about healing and the first step towards healing was ‘to abandon all forms of quick healing’This got me thinking about one word PROCESS. There are so many lessons we fail to learn simply because we don’t want to go through the process.We just want immediate results and quick solutions.

Well,the acne hasn’t gone away.I still have marks on my arms,chest.There are days Im really confident, others I avoid wearing clothes that show my arms or chest area.Sometimes I look for creams or ointments that may cover the blackheads, other times I don’t really care.I do take care of my face, I do home facials,I wash my face twice,I take lots of water, but not to do away with the acne,like before, I was very persistent and determined, but because I wanna take care of my body which is God’s temple.There are days I don’t do these things, but it seems like slowly by slowly I’m not bothered by it.God has made me understand that I am beautiful, with acne or not.I tell myself that every time after dressing up and every time the lies and insecure thoughts come up

Well,you may be battling acne or just something else that eats your confidence. There is hope.All hope is not lost. You can see a dermatologist but even if you are not able to,know that you’re value and worth is determined by God. He made you and in Genesis 1:31 He says that He looked at everything he had made and it was very good!!! So you are very good, spectacular, splendid,incredibly made regardless of what people or society say.God bless you

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A LETTER TO MYSELF

 

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Dear Me,

Its been long since I sat down and wrote you a letter. I hope you are fine. Okay, I know you are not fine. I wanted to say that I am sorry for the many times I have put you down, the many times I have neglected you. I rarely have time for you. I hardly notice you, what you’re going through. I cannot remember the last time I sat down and congratulated you for who you are.

My time has been spent in looking at how inefficient and how unworthy you are. All I have done to you is reduce your value and equate it to other people’s achievements and successes. All I ever do is beat you down and talk about your weaknesses all day long.

I have never noticed how strong you are, how lovely you are. Those big, bright, beautiful eyes you have , that dark, silky, African hair or that lovely smile. I have never noticed how intelligent you are, how diligent and committed you are. I hardly know of your achievements.

I cannot remember the last time I took you out and treated you for some ice-cream or a wonderful pedicure. I cannot remember the last time you slept with contentment and satisfaction in who you are. I cannot remember the last time you appreciated your weaknesses, failures or inadequacies and used them as avenues for growth instead of beating you up. I hardly recall the last time you smiled at yourself, and realized life isn’t a competition; you don’t have to try so hard. You are uniquely unique. For all that and so much more, I am truly sorry.

I cannot take back the time that I spent looking down on you, neither can I take back the words I said to you, but I can fix it TODAY.I promise from now henceforth to look at you, to see you. I will love you, appreciate you. I will not undermine who you are or what you have. I will believe in you and be patient with you. I will treat you with respect and value you. But most of all I will never compare you with anyone else because you are incomparable. You are a masterpiece. Even when I fail, slip or make several mistakes, I will not condemn you. My nights will not be spent in looking at how unaccomplished you are, but how accomplished you are because you are a great person. You are beautiful, amazing and you are simply you. I love you.

With love,

From me,

Josphine Waithera Nduati

Cc: All those who struggle with themselves, who don’t believe in themselves and who undervalue themselves.

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IDENTITY REDEFINED

 

Finally!!I have done it! I am so excited to start my own blog. It has taken great amounts of courage and umph to do it, but I thank God that He has enabled me to do it. The reason I decided to start this blog was to enable people with identity issues particularly self-esteem issues to know that it is possible to overcome these issues with God’s divine enablement. I have had struggled with myself, my identity, who I am, my worth and the sole purpose of my existence. I have attached my identity to the wrong things such as my body image, my education, how intelligent I am, my background among other things. I have had moments where I felt so empty and hopeless, I had moments when I thought of ending my life but I thank God that He allowed me to go through all of that so that I am able to encourage someone else going through the same.
I would like to let you know that whoever you are, wherever you are, you are important and the mere fact of your existence is a miracle. You are not defined by your past mistakes, your abilities, your failures or even your successes, you are defined by God. You are unique and gifted and you are great worth. Allow God to define who you are. On Christ the solid rock I Stand all other ground is sinking sand. Finally allow me to leave you with one of my favourite verses that depicts how valuable you are to God.
1 Peter 1:18-19”For you know it was not with perishable things such as silver and gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious lamb of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.”