Resolve To Honor Your True Self In 2019

Resolve To Honor Your True Self In 2019

Set the intention to take more time for yourself.

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New Year's Resolutions have the reputation of being something we quit within the first half of January. Resolutions like "lose weight", "exercise more", and even the general "get life together" are ways of telling ourselves that we have "bad" habits and behaviors that we need to devote the entire year to fixing so we can become our better self.

Rather than set these resolutions, set yourself free. Let's throw out the old programming that keeps us feeling like less than enough and constantly unworthy. Guilt, shame, insecurity, inadequacy, and self-doubt hold us back and keep us from finding joy. We can all remember our goodness and worthiness, even if it feels like a distant or false memory. It's true - even when we forget.

So, how do you want this year to feel? Will you focus on everything you need to change, or focus on how you can call in even more goodness and light? When you honor yourself in this way, you begin to change the way you spend your time, the people you spend time around, and have more clarity about what brings more joy and energy into your life. Honoring your true self will require you to release the thoughts and behaviors that aren't serving you, create more space for transformation and expansion, and allow yourself to make mistakes.

You are worthy of a life that is not centered around "fixing" or changing aspects of yourself. You are enough exactly as you are.

Find more freedom to do the things that bring us closer to finding what ignites our passions. Surround yourself with people who see you, hear you, understand you, and support you. Clear your space, both physically and emotionally, so you can keep chiseling away and getting closer to your true self. Implement self-care practices with equal amounts of honesty and compassion. Bubble baths are great, but don't forget how many aspects of "boring" self-care can be used, like showing up for yourself and holding yourself accountable.

Stay open to the possibilities and opportunities that await you. Stay faithful and dedicated to yourself with compassion, awareness, and intention. Remember how much things can change in a year.

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What They Don't Tell You About Top Surgery

Top surgery was anything but rainbows and sunshine.

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November 23, 2016, the very day before Thanksgiving, the day I seemed to have waited for my whole life was finally here; I was getting my top surgery. I got my top surgery date 3 months or so prior and every day I would jump out of bed eager to change the countdown I had going on a whiteboard.

Once it got down to single digits the days seemed endless. But it was finally here, it was finally happening. I remember laying on the gurney waving goodbye to my nervous mother and best friend as they wheeled me away. I burst into an extremely brightly lit room, the light hurt my eyes and caused me to squint, when I opened them back up I was directly underneath the largest light I had ever seen, it was blinding and intimidating. Suddenly a nervous rush washed over me as a nurse instructed me to count back from 10 while she was giving me anesthesia.

This was it, it felt as if someone had stood me up and slowly dipped me into a warm bath of water. Here we go, my last breath, my last thoughts as a man with a chest. As the water began to consume me, everything went black.

When I wake, I'll be free.

I woke up to the same nurse patting my cheek telling me I "really needed to stay awake this time, Logan." I couldn't grasp consciousness. I kept sinking in and out. Everything was groggy and I was completely unaware of everything that was going on in my world. I felt different, I couldn't open my eyes or come to reality but I knew, I felt free. I felt like I could breathe for the first time and I hadn't even looked down yet. When I could finally stand on my own two feet I braced myself for the uncomfortable 3 hour car ride home from Albany.

Uncomfortable is such an understatement, but I didn't care: I was free.

I remember snapchatting all my friends selfies of my doped up, post-op surgery smile letting them know I made it out the other side. Any time I caught a glimpse of myself in the car door side mirror I had a smile permanently stamped on my face. This was beautiful, this was living.

After arriving home, the first thing I did was unbutton my shirt and look at my new body in the mirror. The reflection looking back at me was finally starting to align with the thoughts that clouded my head and screamed at me every day. I was elated, the drugs I was doped up on helped a little bit. I made my mom take a picture, I don't even need to pull it up to see the goofy smile that stretched from ear to ear that's been engraved into my memory. I posted it right away captioned "I waited 19 years to post a shirtless picture." I had never been so proud. I inspected my bandages and my drains for at least an hour, still so far in shock; was this real life? Did this really happen?

But what they don't tell you is that recovery is hell.

I've never opened up about my recovery process before, but it was far from rainbows and sunshine. My recovery would last a week; a week of not doing anything. When I say not doing anything, I mean nothing. I was trapped in a recliner for the first 2-3 days before I went stir crazy and then the only movements allowed were walking for shorter periods of time. I couldn't lift my arms, I couldn't go to the gym, which if anyone knows me knows is my second home. I couldn't even comfort myself with a warm shower. I was going insane. It was driving me mad. The first night was smooth sailing- until the drugs wore off. My mom had woken me up in the middle of the night to empty my drains and when I woke up I was in a world of hurt. She practically had to carry me to the bathroom because I was too dizzy to stumble my way there without assistance. She had asked if I was okay but I was in too much pain to even speak the words. Something was wrong, it wasn't just painful but it was uncomfortable. It felt like my chest was fighting itself from the inside out. I looked in the mirror and got scared at the extremely pale and sunken face staring back at me. I stumbled backwards onto the closed toilet and that was all I can remember of the first night. The rest of the week had me feeling like I was trapped in the same dull loop.

It wasn't that I was being overwhelmed with emotions all week like I had expected to be, it was more of being emotionless. One of the last days before I got my drains out, I made a Walmart trip with my mom where we ran into someone I knew and she asked me how I was feeling. I threw on a fake face and attitude and told her I was elated, happy, lucky, blessed, cliché stuff. The truth is I was, absolutely I was, the emotion and feelings in my body just weren't confirming that. I felt empty, like a shell.

When we finally made the trek back to Albany for my reveal, I was so excited to see my bare chest for the first time, I couldn't contain myself. I had a complication with the left side of my chest that caused a lot of swelling. It looked like I had only gotten one breast removed. Dr. Rockmore (highly recommend by the way) numbed my chest just to cut me back open and vacuum the fluid out. You know those spit suckers at the dentist that takes up too much space in your mouth? Picture that, except larger. Imagine feeling that move around inside your chest, feeling like a huge spider was just dancing around trapped inside my body. It was the most uncomfortable thing I've ever experienced, just thinking about it right now makes me cringe. I had to have my left drain in for another week because of it. I could shower this time now, thank God.

I was standing in the bathroom, drain wrapped up (my mom helped me and almost fainted at the sight of the entry spot for my drain tube) and ready for a shower, letting the steam roll out and the water run. The chest I expected to see was nowhere in sight, instead, I was left with a chest that looked like I had just gotten steam-rolled. I was completely black and blue until mid-rib cage, my stitches looked horrific, I got scared. I expected tears of joy and overwhelming happiness when I saw my bare, post-op chest, but instead I felt anxious, nervous. I was so glad I went through with the procedure, I knew I hadn't regretted it, I don't know where these feelings were coming from. I was happy but my mind was not allowing me to be, instead, it pointed out everything that was wrong, it was trying to convince me I had made a mistake.

The last week droned on and I finally got my second drain out along with my stitches. Nothing else was weighing me down, just a bare chest. Every time I went to the bathroom I would take my shirt off, button downs because I still couldn't quite lift my arms, and examine every square inch of my new chest. As I started to heal, the negative thoughts did too. A chest that looked and felt so foreign to me was now the most beautiful part of my body. The first time I applied cream to my scars, I did it with such pride and had tears in my eyes. Finally, my mind was letting me enjoy the body I had just gone through hell and back for. My scars are the greatest accessory I have and I never feel the need to try to hide them. Every time I see them I am reminded of how hard I fought to get them.

Post-op depression is real and I believe I experienced it for a good portion of my recovery. Thankfully it was only temporary, and now I flaunt my chest at every possible moment.

I love my chest, I love my scars, I love my journey. Its been anything but easy, but it's never been a question of "is it worth it?"

Hell yes, it's beyond worth it. You are beyond worth it.

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To The Girl Who Wants A Change

First of all, you're beautiful and girl, I relate.

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Every person on this planet has thought about what they would do if they could change something about their appearance. It may just be me, but there seems to be this stage of depression where you look yourself in the mirror and don't want to be you. You want that bright colored hair if yours is dark. You want your nails done and your makeup on point. You want to have the body type and looks to wear that one outfit you've had your eye on but just can't pull off.

You become almost overconcerned and overly-conscious about how people see you and how your image is projected upon the world.

Honestly, when you get to this point, there's really no going back. Some people are very skeptical of changing things when in this stage of itching for something new. They believe that as soon as it's done that you're going to regret what you've done and now you're gonna hate yourself even more.

My advice is that if this action that you want to do isn't going to hurt you or anyone else, why not? Put some thought into what you're doing and then go for it. Color your hair purple, make your nails into those claws you've loved for so long. Get a tattoo. Although, you might want to think absolutely thoroughly on that last one.

It sucks to live in a society where you feel like you're constantly being scrutinized and just aren't able to do the things you want to. Maybe you're too scared of the outcome. A little nervous. Maybe you grew up with people telling you to stay natural and not do that thing that you want because your body is a temple and you shouldn't disgrace it.

Even temples have murals, sweetheart.

Nobody can tell you how to live. No one can tell you how to look. Never be afraid of change just because someone else wants you to be. Never be afraid to express yourself because people have silenced your voice. Speak loud, proud, and often and you'll be just fine.

And hey, even if you do get your nails done a new way, get your hair dyed or anything else, that isn't the end. You don't have to stick with it if you don't like it. Just find something you do like, something that makes you happy, and always pursue it.

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