Wow, it's been a few weeks since my last post. Just a warning; this one ended up being a looot longer than I originally intended!
I decided to change my blog up a bit, and that's why it looks a little different. :)
One of the big things that happened since I was here last, was that I turned the big 3-0! While I do not think that I am old (definitely not!), I am now confronted with yep, I definitely will keep getting older and it is a strange feeling.
When I was a kid, then a teenager, I kind of felt like I would stay that way. Well, not like OH I CAN'T AGE or anything quite like that (as my consecutive birthdays would easily disprove), but it's like that slight sense of invincibility you have when you are young and think that nothing bad can touch you; that "oh that will never happen to me" mentality.
And I am aging.
While I am not old (yet!) I will (hopefully!) get there, and that takes a bit for my brain to wrap around. I don't feel like I'm 30. On the other hand, my body is starting to age and it's starting to show up in more pronounced ways.
Sun damage in the past couple years have really increased the melanin in my face, and a smattering of freckles and dark spots now rest on my cheeks and nose (not to mention the hands, more showing up on my arms, shoulders, yadda yadda). Fine crows feet and a tracing of indenting at my forehead. Those "smoker" lines around the mouth that you think won't show up for another 30 years have announced their arrival. A more sluggish metabolism, an inability to pull off lack of sleep as well as I did in my early 20's. More grey hair I can't tell, since I dye it . But places like my face, neck, chest and hands are really starting to show that yes, I'm 30 years old, and yes, I've smoked for almost 17 of those years and that bad habit is really (!) starting to reflect on my appearance.
I know there would be people out there thinking: "good grief, she's only thirty and she's making such a big deal out of minor things like this". Yep, I am making a big deal out of it, because prevention is key, and if I start taking care of myself now it could make a huge difference in the future when I'm 45-50+. Also, while not everyone does, I'm sure a lot of people have had similar reactions when they reached a new decade in their adult life and had their own respective "oh shit!" moments. Even if later on your realized that your reaction may have been a bit melodramatic, it can still be a shock.
I know there are some very serious problems out there that this can't even compare to, and it is very vain and mostly just about vanity (although I do want to protect against skin cancers; I've taken enough chances with just smoking alone). But I've also had my fair share of bad things happen (much worse than this) and seen much worse things that many people deal with on a daily basis, I still think it can be healthy to vent about things that frustrate you from time to time, even if they aren't the worst things ever. While vanity is hugely involved, I often use my obsession with beauty products to distract me from my worse problems, and sometimes as a grounding experience when I am having really bad periods (like delusional episodes), even if it only lasts for a bit at a time. Change can really freak me out, even if it's as small as a new freckle (nope, my brain doesn't function very normally nor as rationally as many people's brains do), and this is an attempt to slow that change. Plus it gives me content for my blog!
So in short, yes I am definitely vain and have always worried about my appearance, but I still appreciate what blessings I have and understand that while at times physically and visually the symptoms of aging can be frustrating, aging isn't a luxury afforded to everyone and I'm incredibly lucky to be here.
You'd think the first think I would do would be to quit smoking! (That evil collagen destroying, life-shortening, expensive, wrinkle-forming smoking!) But I am stubborn, I will admit it, and while it is on my to-do list in the near future, I'm putting it off for a few reasons. Are they amazing reasons?
No, not really.
Quitting smoking is hard, I'm a wuss, and I am relying on it more now than ever before even though it is really detrimental to my health and well-being. I've been eating a lot less than I would like (dieting wooo), working out a lot more than ever before, and I use it to distract myself. I use it to help give me 'pep', wake me up, fill the hungry void in my stomach (overly dramatic, I know! But I really like food!) and I use it as a social tool ("hey, want to go out for a smoke?"). And yes, I am very, VERY addicted.
I've lost 30 lbs so far this year and I hope to lose another 25 more, and I know that I will probably gain a bit of weight after quitting smoking despite my best intentions and that scares me. Losing weight can be a lot of work! When I was younger I did it the unhealthy way, where I filled up on cigarette smoke, buckets of coffee, alcohol addiction and the occasional english muffin. I definitely had an eating disorder, and it showed.
(YAY 30 lbs lighter!)
I also use smoking as a stress reliever, as someone who has panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, bouts of bad paranoia and psychosis along with depression and other bad and annoying things (so all in all, I have a lot of stress).
Anyway! I guess this post is turning into a bit of a resolution post, despite it being the 8th month in the year. I don't want to quit smoking, but I do, and I have to. I want to get closer to my goal weight first, and then it won't be as big of a deal if I gain back a couple pounds even though I will try very hard not to. But I may end up ditching the ciggy's before I hit my goal, I don't know. I picked up one of those Nicorette inhaler things, as that really helped me the last time I kicked the habit for 5 months.
Other than that, I am being diligent with sun protection, and have established a skin care routine that I've actually gotten off my butt to continue doing. I love skin care! I always have. But I'm lazy, and after a few days of it I usually drift away to other things before coming back and half-heartedly working at keeping better care of my skin. WELL NOT THIS TIME!! DUN DUN DUUUUUUUN!
I'll update the blog as my product usage progresses so I can give more accurate reviews. Although it will be a bit difficult, since I'm using several things at a time, so attributing changes to only one product will be a bit harder. Some of the products I'm using I've used before, so I have a good idea of results I was getting with them before I added more things into my regimen.
However, I'm leaving that for another post, as I think this one is quite long enough! If someone actually reads the entire thing that will be very impressive indeed. XD
Until next time!
(All images copyright Quan Inc., Business Fish, taken from Facebook and Google because they are awesome and they accurately portray how I feel (minus the whole being a fish man)).