“There’s a light even in the darkest place…” –Unknown

This week’s topic is a little different than the past.  Unlike my previous posts, I am not focusing on finding a look for less.  Instead I’m discussing a budget friendly beauty find, along with a related topic that is very personal and close to my heart….

When I was first debating whether or not to start a blog, one of the main hesitations that I had was whether or not I would feel comfortable sharing certain stories, events or details of my life with the world.  For some reason, I didn’t mind the idea of sharing my life story with strangers, but it terrified me to know that there was a possibility of someone from my past or present reading and possibly judging my writing and the topic I was writing about.  I thought long and hard and at the end of the day, I decided it was what I wanted to do, and I was not going to let fear stand in my way.  At that point in time, I decided that no matter what I wrote about, I wanted it to be my authentic voice.  I didn’t want to hold back for fear of what anyone thought.  In doing this I hoped that the blog could be something that other women could relate to.  With that being said, I have to be honest with you all that I had a different article scheduled to write about this week.  However, I’m going through a difficult time in my life right now and I didn’t feel I would be authentically able to write what I had planned when it was the furthest thing from my mind.  I also didn’t want to act like everything in my life was currently great, because truth be told it isn’t…

I know, in general, its taboo to talk about mental illness, but can I just say I really wish it wasn’t?  I have struggled with severe anxiety and depression since I was in high school (over 10 years ago).  I truly feel that if more young women or people in general would have talked about it when I was younger, than maybe I wouldn’t have felt so alone and maybe I would have sought help sooner than I did.  I fought against the depression and anxiety on my own for 5 years.  That’s 5 years I could have been getting help, but I was scared and did not know any better because my family and friends didn’t know what to do with me.  They didn’t understand what was happening to me and I can’t blame them, because I, myself, didn’t understand.  I now see a therapist regularly.  I take medication.  And for the most part things are under control.  But, for some unbeknownst reason to my therapist and myself I sometimes have un-triggered periods of time where I go from being steady and happy to being extremely anxious and depressed…and unfortunately, that’s the stage I am currently going through right now.

When I’m in these states I’m usually so desperate to feel better that I would do almost anything to make myself feel better.  At one point in my life, pizza and beer was my safe haven, which is a huge reason why I gained so much weight.  I tried to sooth myself with food and alcohol amongst other things throughout the years- trying to cope and numb the feelings I had.  Needless to say these tactics didn’t help and ultimately made things worse.  I know that now and I also know that at this point in my life, food and alcohol are NOT an option while I continue on my weight loss journey.  So, I’ve had to find another coping mechanism…something I could look forward to like I did food, but now it had to be something that could give me a pick me up and still keep me on track with my health goals.

This may sound silly, but I discovered that I get very happy when I have a fresh coat of nail polish or when I buy a new nail color at the drug store.  Of course I would kill for a weekly manicure, but we all know I can’t really afford that, so the next best thing is doing my own nails- and it really does make me happy. My two favorite brands are OPI and Essie.  They are both great nail polishes, but when you are buying one or two or three or four depending on the month then that can really add up when it costs $8.99 a bottle.

So, once again, I had to look for an alternative.  I tried out several low cost nail polishes before I finally found one that I really do love. The alternative I found is a brand called Sinful Colors, and can be found at Walgreens for just $1.99.  The consistency of the polish and the brush is similar to that of my faves listed above.

I’m very happy that I was able to find a coping mechanism that worked for me that was healthy, affordable and fun.  Now, let me be clear…I’m not saying this always works or that I magically am not depressed or anxious after painting my nails.  But, it does provide a slight relief for when I’m going through a hard time.  And a slight relief is better than no relief at all.

“You never realize how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.”

I realize this post was kind of all over the place and I apologize for that.  We went from talking about mental disorders, to food, to alcohol to nail polish.  There is a point to all of this though, I promise…

First, on the fashion/beauty side…I just want to say that I hope I proved above with the example of the Sinful Colors nail polish that you can have fun and experiment with polish even if you are on a budget!  I’m telling you, a fresh coat of polish with a new color does wonders for my spirit!  So give it a try and see if you feel a lift as well.

Secondly, I want to thank all of you for allowing me to share my personal story with you this week.  Anything else I would have written would have been fake, and like I said that’s not what I want for this blog!

And finally, any girls who may be reading this and are struggling with any sort of mental illness, please know that you are not alone.  You are not abnormal.  You are not incapable of accomplishing things.  Your disorder does NOT define who YOU are.  AND seriously, one more time because I believe it to be the most important thing to remember…you are really not alone!  Just so you all know…everything I stated above is something that I have to remind myself of on a daily basis as well- especially on weeks like this when I’m not doing so great.  So I’m right there with you!!!

NOW….everyone go paint your nails stat!!!

I look forward to coming to you next week with a new very fun fashion find and hopefully a lifted spirit.

See you then…Xx!

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