There is a beautiful, silent power when you present to the world that you love yourself as you are.
For me, being accepting of my scars is something that I’ve had to deal with since I could even remember. It’s still a struggle to this day, but you really just have to be able to own yourself. There is a beautiful, silent power when you present to the world that you love yourself as you are. Being vulnerable is sometimes the most powerful thing you can be, so having scars and going through a lot of medical issues has only made me stronger.
When you’re going through something so physical and on the brink of surgeries or death, that is obviously going to affect your mental health. You have to take care of your body any way you can. My self care can be as simple as taking a bath. You really have to take advantage of that to regain this feeling of control over yourself and your body. I’ve almost fallen in love with my body again and felt more comfortable in my own skin because of this [challenge]. My skin has been glowing and, if you have that, it can be a little bit of a pick-me-up.
I’m also a big fan of sheet masks and eye patches that you keep in the fridge. I normally have super early call times, like 6 a.m., so I wake up at 5 and take the sheet mask from the fridge. It wakes you up immediately, and then you put your glasses and baseball cap on, jump in the car, and do a face roller the entire time on your way to work. I normally use Joanna Vargas’ face masks and Nurse Jamie’s Beauty Roller. Peter Thomas Roth also has really great eye patches as well.
When I was younger, I really did not want to be public about it. Not that I was ashamed or embarrassed — I just didn’t want to be a poster child. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve felt that it’s so important to be able to talk about it. I realized that for women especially, it takes a huge toll on your mental health because of what happens to you physically. In telling my story, so many people have reached out to tell me theirs… it also helps me.
In order to be OK on a daily basis, especially when you do get a lot of hate and judgement and critics out there that hide behind keyboards, you have to have a really strong back and rely on other people having your back. I have the most amazing fans in the entire world that go apeshit on the trolls. I found that it’s been super transformative on my mental state and confidence to have people like that in my life.