Slowly but surely, the first flowers are starting to bud, from the daphnes (left) to the rosemary (which the bees will be stoked about – as soon as it warms up enough to emerge) and the crocuses. As my husband would say, noice!!
I’ve always had a mad crush on Alicia Keys and it’s gotten into a true love affair with her living makeup free. I’ve always had a massive problem with the magazines of today – especially the ones who purport to EMPOWER women yet are loaded with nearly all of their ads telling us how we’re not good enough, articles how we can “look younger” (because god forbid you look your age), makeup artists who are interviewed about “helping” women “look like better versions of themselves” (as if they’re not good enough unless they wear a bit of concealer, and blush, and foundation, and mascara), and scream about diversity and think they’ve fulfilled their quota by having one article or cover shot of Ashley Graham that year and then go back to size 2’s everywhere else. I’m tired of being 43 and told that I can “look great at any age” because every magazine does that once a year, as if I’m supposed to be amazed that a 43 year old like me can possibly deserve to look good – then watch them tell you how to “dress your age,” and that for some reason I (along with all celebrities over the age of 30) am now relegated to the wrinkle cream section of the magazine – because god forbid I tell those manufacturers to go fuck themselves. The other day I noticed I’m getting the first signs of what’s sweetly referred to as a “necklace line” on my neck – and when I googled it, I found – in this order – 1) a plastic surgeon’s website, 2) “5 Ways To Hide Your Turkey Neck”, and 3) an InStyle magazine article on what kind of fillers, cosmetics, and surgeries can “fix” this. In fact, the entire page of results was all about why this was an ugly, awful, disgusting flaw that must be corrected. Nothing scientific at all. So with that, tonight I decided – rather than watching that Lying Orange Fuckwit (who just today insulted our intelligence by claiming to care about Made In USA while his own companies do not, spits on immigrants – while his own winery seeks out migrant workers – and claims to keep water clean while ultimately shitting all over the environment by removing most clean water regulations that have gotten us out of the shithole of the 1970s), I decided to watch the full documentary of Embrace, something I’d seen some of the videos of on YouTube but now that it’s on Amazon, I got to watch in its entirety. Taryn, you might remember, is the phenomenal Australian woman who posted a nude photo of her real, genuine post-baby body and it went viral. She’s leading the charge, and I’m glad to be part in any way I can. Above center is me, tonight, no makeup, no photoshop, selfie taken in the doorway of my bathroom. This is what 43 looks like. These wrinkles under my eyes are what I’ve earned by seeing the world and the people in it and playing in the sunshine and putting in my contacts every day. These are my unplucked eyebrows (including the right one which to this day shows the effect of unsupervised plucking from when I was about 19 years old in the mild attempt to look like Linda Evangelista a la 1993) that I’ve not allowed tweezers near in over 10 years. This is the face that has only seen foundation on it ONCE – for a school play in 7th grade where they put pancake makeup on me for my 5 minutes on stage. This is the nose my Norwegian-blooded half-sister used to call a “pig nose” because it wasn’t long and thin like hers. This is the face that has never purchased foundation or blush. This is the face that once wore black eyeliner like a religion and red lipstick like a trademark – but never thought it should be worn while exercising (makeup was something I learned in my SoCal years was par for the course in the gym – no wonder I could never go to their hip hop classes that I used to love so much in the Northwest!). These are the eyes my husband fell in love with from across the pond and the lips that he kisses every morning and every evening (and as often as possible in between). These are the freckles on my collarbone that reflect the times I didn’t wear enough sunscreen or simply got from long horseback rides in the summers at camp or driving with friends to the coast or working in the garden with my love. Every morning my routine is as follows – splash water on my face, put on an eco-friendly SPF moisturizer, brush my hair, put in my contacts and dab my pits with some homemade coconut oil/baking soda/lavender oil deodorant. Bam. I’ve got more to show, but this is where I want to start. Remember, a lot of them assholes at the fertility clinics claim they want to help women yet they weigh you and often require a bullshit BMI to even treat you, which has zero bearing on IVF success rates. Watch the Embrace documentary or at least the bits about it on YouTube. Take a day off – or two, or three – from cosmetics. And remember that everything your body is on the outside is perfect in all of its imperfections. You want to be stronger? Be stronger. You want more endurance? Climb those stairs. But if it’s about eliminating shame about who you are? Fuck that shit. You got nothin’ to be ashamed of.
“I don’t want to cover up anymore. Not my face, not my mind, not my soul, not my thoughts, not my dreams, not my struggles, not my emotional growth. Nothing.”
~ Alicia Keys for Lenny