About a year ago, a very dark spot suddenly appeared on my upper lip. At first, I was able to cover it up with some heavy-duty makeup, but I started to notice the spot seemed to be getting bigger…and possibly darker. Finally, my husband convinced me to go to the dermatologist.
The doctor immediately told me she could make this spot disappear. Thank God! But first, she needed to biopsy it. Um no, you can’t cut a piece of my face off! But she refused to do anything until we were sure it wasn’t anything serious. After three long weeks of waiting, I found out the spot was nothing more than a sun spot…and the fact that I’m actually aging….what!?
I then went through three laser treatments to get rid of it. After each time, the healing process was quick. It scabbed over and flaked off within a few days. Each time the spot got lighter and a bit smaller.
During my most recent visit, my doctor recommended a more intense laser. This meant a bigger area and a longer healing process. Sign me up! I could see the light at the end of the tunnel. I signed my life away (well, it at least felt like it due to all the potential risks that they need to tell you about) and laid down for three minutes of mild pain.
Laser treatments aren’t that bad, but hating the way I look afterward is the ultimate worst. Feeling like a teenager again, I wanted to hide away in my room. I didn’t want anyone to see me. Especially this time since the spot was so big and dark. It drew attention, and I know people were staring.
When I looked in the mirror, it was all I could see. This time around, my insecurities were in full effect.
Especially since we needed to attend my oldest son’s first lacrosse game, and we were meeting new friends for dinner. I had a baby shower to attend too. Life goes on.
As I sat down to breakfast with my family that morning, I tried to convince my husband that maybe it would be best for me to stay home. I mean, the doctor did say I should stay out of the sun! I even tried to give the excuse that my little guy was coming down with a cold. My husband responded that I was indeed going, and I willingly decided to do this to myself. I just had to deal with it, even if I didn’t want to show my face to the world.
But then my daughter, my little four-year-old baby, reached over and grabbed my hand. She looked right at me and said, “Mommy, you’re perfect.” How can such a little thing be so wise? I didn’t even realize that she was listening. But they are always listening. And what kind of message was I sending?
Why was I so concerned with how I looked? Why did I care so much about what others would think of me? The opinions of my children (and oh yeah, my husband) are the only ones I should care about. And even when I feel like the worst mother in the world, they still think I’m pretty awesome….even perfect!
And they are right. I am perfect in my imperfections…even with a little brown spot on my upper lip. So I gathered myself together, took one last look in the mirror, and went on with my day. And guess what, it was a pretty perfect day.
Now I need to remind myself of all of this when it’s time to put that bathing suit back on!