12-Facts About Me: The Dirt, The Deets, The Details!

I started this blog as a way to document my weight-loss journey and it's become so much more than that now. It's become my little corner of the internet where I can come and vent and write and share about life with all of you! I'm grateful for this space and even more grateful for my readers. I'm humbled you take the time to read about my world, my thoughts, and my opinions so I thought I'd share some wacky facts about me. Wacky? Maybe not that scandalous, but some are pretty weird. (Insert laughing emoji here). I have some pretty weird habits that might terrify you, but hopefully, most of them will make you laugh out loud. Because isn't that the point really? To laugh as much as possible in this life. Join me while I share a list with you that I've never shared before with anyone! But most people know most of these...or do they? 

10-Hilarious Facts About me! 

1. I've had a love affair with Haagen-das since I was 19-years-old. My boyfriend at the time introduced me to this crack and I haven't been able to quit the stuff! In fact, I'm eating some at this very moment as I write this piece. I'll never forget the time Aiden took me down ice cream aisle at the Whole Foods that had recently opened up in our town. We had just gotten off a 10-hour shift at our swanky retail job and I was craving something sweet. I mean, I've had ice cream tons of times before, but when I met Haagen-das, it was a lasting love affair that will last a lifetime! 

2. Not only do I own 3-dogs, but I own 5-cats. Yup! You read that right, 5 crazy, quirky, wacky, furry, spunky cats and when I tell most people this, they either laugh or cry, I'm not really sure which is the better reaction.

3. I've loved jazz since I could walk. I opt to listen to it over anything, which I know surprises most of you since I'm always blasting 80's pop music on Instagram, but jazz and I go way, way, back. And by jazz, I mean the greats, John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Art Blakey, Coleman Hawkins, Diana Krall, Billie Holiday, the list goes on and on and on. I could talk about jazz for hours and hours. Big jazz nerd over here! Since we're on the topic of music I was raised on the greats too! Sinatra, Bennet, Anka, Martin, and off of the wonderful music that most people my age don't even know who I'm talking about....

4. I started this blog as a way to document my weight-loss. In 2014 I lost 155-pounds and have kept it off ever since! And in 2015 my weight-loss story was featured in Fitness Magazine! I haven't gained back a pound. But, with my surgery, last year by body changed slightly, but it's slowly getting back to what it was post-op. I use to weight 280-pounds and had a wake-up call when my doctor told me I could die if I didn't change my lifestyle. Talk about humiliating! I walked out of that office, got on a running plan, changed my eating habits, and started eating clean. The weight came off and I now workout and eat healthy to be the healthiest, happiest version of myself. I'm training for my first race this summer and I'm excited to be finally taking my running to the next level! Although, I do prefer running with Roxy over anything else! 

5. I'm currently working on my master's degree in nutrition which is a ton of work, but I know it will all be worth it in the end. I have my degree in journalism and was dead-set on being the next Christiane Amanpour but things change and my life took a different direction and I'm still doing what I love, journalism-wise. Reporting, eating all the amazing food, and writing for all of you! 

6. I've been working since I was 13-years-old. My parents always told me that if I wanted something, I'd have to go out and make it happen. I hated scooping ice cream till the wee hours of the night on weekends, but I respect my parents for pushing me to fend for myself. I now run two business's and I'm a female entrepreneur and I'm really proud of that. Thanks, dad!

7. I've been doing Karate since I could walk. My dad has a black belt in karate and taught me how to defend myself at a very young age. While I do not practice this beautiful art form any longer, I still practice from time to time to make sure I know my stuff. And I do the horse karate stance every single day for 5-minutes. I use to be able to do it for 30-minutes a day and I'm slowing working my way back to that. What's the horse stance? You can learn all about this amazing exercise here.  

8. I chew ice like a crazy person! No joke you guys, I go through a bag a week! I've been chewing ice since I found out I have severe anemia due to having benign fibroids. I eat very little meat in my diet and my fibroids cause me be anemic. Anemia affects 60% of women and should not be taken lightly. If you struggle with fatigue or have heavy periods, please go get your iron levels checked! I eat tons of dark, leafy, greens and my body still wants all the ice! My dentist says it's fine, as long I only chew the soft ice! There is only one brand of ice I'll buy and that's the Raley's brand because it's soft, almost like the ice you get in a snow cone. If I can't get my hands on it for one reason or another or I'm traveling, I won't chew ice that weekend.

9. I used to be a belly dancer! In college, I started taking belly dancing classes to blow some steam off, but then I became immersed in the culture and fell in love with the dance! I traveled all over performing in restaurants and shows, but the belly dancing world can be a dark one filled with many toxic people, so after a few years in that world, I got myself out of it. No regrets! I learned a lot about what it means to be a strong woman during that time. 

10. I moved to Los Angeles when I was just a baby! 18-years-old, because I wanted to be a movie star! I've been in commercials, indie films, plays, and have been doing theater since I was a baby. Although I don't live in LA anymore, I feel closer and closer to that world every day being a health and wellness blogger. What's really cool now is I'm lucky enough to combine all of my talents into one amazing job, fitness, acting, writing, photography, influencing, and cooking all the food! 

11. I love to travel! Tell me where we are going and what to pack and I'm there! Travel and photography are a huge part of my life and my goal is to travel all over the world one day. My next stops are Palm Springs, British Columbia, Italy, and Kauai. Although I've already been to Kauai, (I go every year!)  I secretly wish I could pack a bag, grab my dogs and cats, move to Kauai and open my own yoga studio there. I could certainly see myself living the Aloha lifestyle full time! My travel bucket list next stop is Thailand! I want to go and stay at the elephant retreat in Thailand and take care of all the rescued elephants! 

12. I want to be a certified yoga teacher. I've been practicing yoga since my first year of high school when my best friend gave me a DVD to try out, and I've been hooked every since! I love that yoga brings me back to my center. When I practice I feel free of all of my mistakes, my excoriation habit, my pain, bad memories, and heartbreak. When I'm moving and breathing in yoga I truly feel weightless and free. It's a feeling I hope everyone gets to experience and I want to share my passion of yoga with as many people as possible. My favorite style is Vinyasa and I'm currently reaching out to local studios for teacher training. I'm really hoping to be certified by 2018! 

Well, I could list a ton more facts, but this is all for now! 

 

P.S- Okay so one more! I have multiple tattoos but the one that's the most meaningful to me is: "La Bella Vita" which means The Beautiful Life in Italian and it's a saying my Grandfather would say to me on a daily basis. "Genevieve, life is La Bella Vita!" I miss him more than words could ever express. 

To health and happiness! 

Guilt: The Body Shaming of Emotions

You know how when you get that big promotion at work, or when you fit into those size-6 jeans (finally!), you don't feel guilty right? Because feeling guilty over these things would be silly. Or that's what society tells us to think. Yesterday, I started seeing a therapist for too many reasons to list here, but the mains are for excoriation and PTSD. Two very serious mental health issues that no one wants to talk about because they are uncomfortable. For those of you that don't know what excoriation is it's a picking disorder when one picks their skin uncontrollably. I've struggled with it most of my life and I've promised myself that the year I turned 30 would be the year I stop. So here I am in May of 2017 seeing a therapist. I did not have the best childhood growing up, so I'm also going to therapy for all of those things, and that list is more than one blog post can handle. 

My therapist asked me all kinds of questions yesterday since it was our first session, it's considered the "getting to know you session". I an open book and I have absolutely no issue opening up to people and I think that shocked her a little bit. Right off the bat, I was telling her everything, so much so, that I could feel her energy go from uplifting to being overwhelmed. She asked me several questions and decided that I have "general anxiety disorder." General huh? It feels a lot more than just general. She also says I most likely struggle with PTSD but there will be many more appointments and tests before we can know for sure. She asked me about my family relationships and I was completely honest with her about my relationship with my mom. I told her my mom is a functioning alcoholic and my relationship with her is tumultuous at best. She asked me to give her several examples of what it was like growing up with here and I did.

I told her about the time my mother threw a wine glass at my head when I was 10-years-old for wanting to decorate the Christmas tree. I told her about the time my mother sent me to the hospital on the eve of Thanksgiving when I was 8-years-old and convinced me I had a flesh eating disease in order to get me to stop picking. I told her about the time my mother left me with her crazy boyfriend and he and his son proceeded to yell and belittle me for two and half hours, among other things. I told her about the multiple times my mother left me at the elementary school until 9:00 at night, with no phone call or reason why she forgot to pick me up. There are many more examples, but I'll leave it at these for now.

After telling my therapist all of these things, she was very quiet for what felt like a very long time. I sat there uncomfortably and just waited. And waited. And waited. I started to fidget and looked at all of the items in her office. You can tell a lot about a person by what they have in their office. I noticed family photos, Chinese proverbs on the walls, and a ton of books about anxiety. In the middle of my looking around her office, she said: "Why do you continue to have a relationship with your mother?" Her words knocked the wind right out of me. I literally almost fell off my chair. "Why do I continue to have a relationship with with your mother?" Her sentence just repeated over and over and over again in my brain until I felt dizzy and light headed. She asked if I was okay and needed some water and I said: "I'm fine, I'm just stunned you would ask that." And she said: "Why are you stunned? I mean, you've done a really amazing job of getting rid of all of the other toxic people in your life, why do you still continue a relationship with the most toxic one of them all?"

I didn't have an answer for her. It was the first time in a long time that a person was able to make me quiet. I had nothing to say and that question has been rolling around in my head since the session. The only thing I could say to my therapist was that I still talk to her because I feel guilty. She asked me why I felt guilty and I told her because my mom doesn't have anyone else. Most of her friends stopped speaking to her because of her drinking and she only has her brother and sister left.....and me. My therapist explained to me that there is no reason to feel guilty if the person you are dealing with on a regular basis completely drags you down. I kept insisting that the reason why I feel so guilty is because she is my mom. This isn't just a friend or an aunt, this is my mom. The woman who gave birth to me! She said it doesn't matter if they're friends or blood or family or whatever if they drag you down and make you feel worthless then they are not worth it. 

She's right. It shocks me and it may take a few days for the shock to wear off, but ultimately she is right. Why do we feel so guilty over letting certain people go? I'm constantly preaching to my audience to get rid of and walk away from anything or anyone that no longer serves you and yet I cannot do it myself. My mom breaks my heart on a daily basis and takes over my brain space and it's not worth it anymore. Yet, I continue to talk to her and let her slide on everything. Why? I guess I'm hoping that one day will have that "normal" mother/daughter relationship that I've always longed for. I suppose though if it hasn't happened yet, it's most likely not going to happen now. I need to get to the root of why I feel guilty about this. And an even bigger question I ask all of you is why do we guilty over certain things? Why do we feel guilty about wanting a bigger home, a bigger car, a smaller ribcage, better abs? Since when did it become cool and normal to feel guilty? Do you know how guilt weighs us down emotionally? It's like walking through quicksand all of the time. It's not healthy and it doesn't serve us in any way shape or form so why do we feel it all of the time? Mom's feel it, daughters feel it, teachers feel it, parents feel it, everyone feels guilty. Guilt is the body shaming on emotions. It's the norm to call women skinny, fat, heavy, too tall, too short, and it's now normal to feel guilty over things we should never feel guilty over.  I live on 15-acres and I have a wonderful home and yet I want a bigger one. I find myself feeling guilty about this. Why? It's human nature to always want more so why do we feel guilty about it? And why do I feel so guilty about breaking up with my relationship with my mom? 

Guilt does absolutely nothing but bring us down and make us feel useless. It's time we stop placing guilt on ourselves about everything and start taking a different approach. Instead of feeling guilty, let's feel empowered. Instead of wading in the quicksand let's go dive in the ocean.

Now, I don't have all of the answers and it's going to take me some time to figure out what to do about my relationship with my mom, but in the interim, I'm done feeling guilty about all of it. I'm freeing myself from guilt and breaking out of the brain jail I've locked myself in for so many years. 

How do you deal with guilt? Do you feel it's a waste of time? What the point of guilt? 

Everyone Doesn't Have to Like You | Actually It's A Good Thing!

I'm standing in my kitchen at 3am attempting to eat a pint of Hagen Daas Peanut Butter Chocolate Ice Cream, staring at my cat Lucca, and remembering that time in second grade when I walked out of the classroom for recess to meet my friend who I assumed was waiting for me at the pole with her peanut butter jelly sandwich in hand, only to find out she no longer wanted to spend recess with me anymore. "I don't want to eat with you anymore, I'm going to go eat with Nicole now," I remember tears welling up in my eyes, I ran into the bathroom stall, eating lunch alone, feeling like the loneliest girl in the world with tears streaming down my face. I went home crying to my Dad asking him why Amanda didn't like me anymore. And he point-blankly said, "Because that's life kid, not everyone's going to like you and that's a good thing!" I remember thinking my dad was crazy at the time. Flash forward to me being 30-years-old now and you know what? He's right! It only took 27 years for me to realize it, but that has been some of the best advice my dad has ever given me. 

If you're anything like me, you probably scroll through Instagram wondering if the accounts who follow you actually like you. Well, this use to be me before I turned 30 and had an epiphany one day that it didn't matter at all if they liked me. What matters is if I like me. Some days I would look at other bloggers and see their interactions with each other and yearn to be apart of their "it-club." Instagram started feeling like high-school and less like that place I would refer to as a community. It was at that moment, I realized I needed to stop caring whether or not anyone liked me. I needed to focus on myself and love myself. And you know what? Everything changed. All those bloggers who once ignored me started interacting with me. those "it-girls" started coming to me for advice and started asking me questions. I realized that I was putting out an energy that wasn't welcoming and it was not until I truly started to love myself, that I gave and continue to give off some really positive vibes. Everything changed for me, it was as if I moved out my own way and paved the way for new opportunities. Doors opened, birds chirped, and all of the sudden I was flooded with all the love. 

But with all this new found love comes a trickle of jealousy too. Does everyone like me? No. Are people online mean and do condescending digs? All the time. Do I pay attention to it anymore? Not even a little but. I simply don't care if other's like me because I LOVE MYSELF. Yup. I did in all caps because it's true. You cannot get upset when other's don't like you, because my darling, most people don't even like themselves. There's a reason that quote when viral on the internet overnight because it's true. Most people wake up in the morning, say something gross about themselves to themselves in the mirror and continue this negative mindset all day long, dragging everyone else in the mud along with them. I wake up in the morning, look at myself the mirror and say: "Damn girl, you are gorgeous, and today is going to be amazing!" And it works, not only does it work, but I find myself dancing and singing throughout the day and having a really good time, by myself. Does anyone watch my IG stories? If you do, then you'll see all the dancing! 

Loving yourself is the only way to truly be free. Let go what other's may or may not think of you and just do you and when you do you, OWN IT! If you do it, say it, be it, stand behind it and own it. Give yourself an air-kiss in the mirror everything morning and tell yourself how amazing you are, beause you are amazing! Stop asking for permissiona and start sharing your amazingness with the world! 

Love yourself and doors you never thought possible will open far and wide! 

8 Ways To Fall In Love In Love With Yourself

Do you ever wake up in the morning, look in the mirror, and say "Yuck, I look horrible." Or "Ughh this face is horrible." Every woman wakes up in the morning, looks at herself in the mirror, and frowns on herself. And half the time we don't even know we are doing it. The first thought you say to yourself either out loud or in your head sets the entire tone for the day. If you start your day off saying something negative to yourself, then you are automatically bringing all of that negative energy to everything you set your focus on the rest of the day. Think about it, the days you started saying something negative about yourself in the mirror, did you have amazing days those days? Or did things not go your way? I believe that everything should go exactly your way and the first way to start doing that is to say something nice to yourself when you look in the mirror. And I don't mean something small, I mean something really nice about yourself like, "Girl you are absolutely gorgeous and today is your day!"  This is just one of the ways to fall in love with yourself. 

Here are 10-ways to fall in love with yourself and be your best self! 

1. Wake up, look in the mirror, and say: "You are beautiful, you are strong, you are capable."

2. Hit that unfollow button! Yes, ladies I'm instructing you to un-follow people. It can be really hard to feel good about yourself when you are constantly scrolling someone's social media feed. Instagram is what always gets me and the moment those feelings of self-doubt and the "I'm not enough" feelings, I immediatly put my phone down and focus on something else. Sometimes I even un-follow the person if it's someone whose feed causes me to doubt my abilities. 

3. We feel good when we look good. Now, looking good is different for everyone. For example, sometimes I feel my hottest when I wearing my nikes, a hat, and a cute workout outfit. Some days I want to be wearing the reddest lipstick I own and a boots with a really cute outfit. The point is, wear something that makes you feel good, or do your hair, just do or wear whatever makes you feel good. If you feel good, you'll give off a good vibe which will make others feel good too. Spread all that goodness around! 

4. Exercise, Exercise, Exercise! Girl get your sweat on! When I was heavier and found out that I needed to lose weight, exercise saved my life, literally. Now, I do it because it's an integral part of my day and it makes me feel so good. Even on the days when I don't feel like doing it, I still love working out because when I'm done I feel like an entirely new person. I feel motivated and ready to take on any task that comes my way. I don't think there has ever been a time when I've gotten done working out where I haven't felt good. I literally feel good every single time and sweat helps keep your skin clear, so another reason to exercise, exercise, exercise!

5. Make a decadent, gorgeous drink the morning. And no, I don't mean something super sugary and sweet, I mean make yourself a gorgeous cup of coffee with tons of yummy spices and frothy foam. Or make yourself a beautiful smoothie and top with healthy toppings like peanut butter, pepitas, and unsweetened shredded coconut. Make yourself a gorgeous drink and enjoy every sip of it. Don't scroll through your phone, don't check your e-mail, just be with yourself and enjoy your drink before doing anything else.

6.  Do self care. Take a bath, fill the tub up with epsom salts, fresh flowers (yes I said flowers) and lavender essential oil and enjoy every single minute of that bath. And again, turn your phone off, and just chill with yourself girl, this is YOU time, not anyone else's time. Remember that when you are scrolling through your phone, you are not using your time, you are using someone else's time. You are looking at someone else's photos and videos. You are using your precious time to look into things that took someone else a bunch of time. I bet you've never thought about social media like that before. You are not using your time, you are using up someone else's time.

7. Do Yoga, meditate, breath. Start a yoga practice, begin a meditation practice, even if it's just for 15-minutes a day, these two things work. I'm hosting a #FitDailyYoga Challenge for 30-days on Instagram right now and it's not to late to join in on the fun! For me starting out my day with yoga right after I've had my gorgeous cup of Bullet Proof Coffee sets the tone for the entire day. And let me tell you, it works! Many of you know that I struggle with anxiety and yoga has helped immensly with my anxiety. I do it in a pretty space in my house, filled with plants, and lots of light. I turn my phone off, and I focus on my practice. 

8. Throughout the day tell yourself how awesome you are. Go back and look in the mirror and tell yourself how amazing you are! You are awesome! You can do this and you will achieve everything you set your mind to. Tell yourself that and look at how much your day will change. Also, do reset. I do this constantly if I'm having an off day. Do a reset, start over, make yourself a fresh cup of coffee, take a minute to yourself, and start over. Just because you are having a bad moment or a bad hour, doesn't mean the entire day has to be bad. Remember that! Reset and start over and see how wonderful your day will become! 

I hope these things can help you truly love yourself. Love every single inch of yourself and stop putting bad vibes on yourself. Tell yourself how amazing you are and walk around with some swagger and love yourself! Tell yourself that you are gorgeous every time you look in the mirror, tell yourself that you will land that campaign or book that gig, or whatever your goal may be. Write post-it's and place them all around your house and write quotes on them that make you feel good. For example, mine say "I can do this, I'm amazing!"

These little exercises help and will over time help you fall in love yourself and 100% accept yourself. Every single flaw and all, but they are not flaws, they are the tiny little gems that make you, you and sets you apart from the rest of the world! 

The Cracks Beneath My Skin

It's 9 pm at night and I walk into my bathroom, turn all of the lights on and stare into the mirror. There's one, there's another, and there is a good one. I see the one I want to get first, and I go up really close to my mirror, stare at my face, and begin. The sharp edge of my nail pierces the first layer of my skin and it starts to bleed. As blood is dripping down my face, I wince a little, but then the overwhelming feeling of euphoria comes over me and I feel relief, followed by the feeling of exhaustion and intense guilt. This cycle continues until I've picked all of the scabs off my face and there's nothing left. I have a picking addiction, otherwise known as Excoriation. Many people struggle with what I go through, but no one talks about it. By looking at me from afar or watching me perform on stage, you would never know that I struggle with this addiction that over 40% of the American population struggles with daily. But if you look at me closely, with no makeup on, you'll see my scars. 

I first started picking when I was 5-years-old as a coping mechanism to deal with my parents brutal and ugly divorce. Or that's at least how a therapist once told it to me. I was once called into the principles office when I was in second grade because my teacher thought my mother was burning me with cigarette buds, which was hilarious because my parents don't smoke. She looked at me and said, "Honey, does your mother hurt you with cigarettes?" I looked straight into her eyes and said, "No, ma'am, I'm a picker." She said, "What?" and I replied back with, "I pick my skin ma'am." She didn't know what to do with the information I gave her. She couldn't understand why I had scabs all over my arms and why I insisted on wearing sweaters when it was 90-degrees outside. She refrained from calling Child Protective Services but told my mother, I needed to see a therapist right away. Then there was the time when I was in high school and my arm was bleeding as I got out the pool during swim practice. My swim coach asked me if I had cut myself on the drain and I told him no, and hurriedly ran into the locker room while wrapping my arm with a towel to stop the bleeding. My friends were always too polite to say anything about it to me. No one seemed to want to know why I had scars all over me, or why I carried tweezers in my bag to help rip the skin off my face in the girl's bathroom during recess. No one seemed to care that I was in a great deal of pain and that picking was my way of telling them, asking them, begging them to help me. I remember a time when I was 11 when I went to get my hair cut, and the girl was washing my hair, she felt a lump on my head. She asked my mother was it was, and my mom said it was nothing. It wasn't nothing, it was a scab the size of a golf ball, that I had been gnawing away with my fingers for months. I still remember that time and think of how lucky I was that I didn't get a horrible infection in my brain at the time. 

Then there was the time when my mother tried to rid me of my habit that same year, the night before Thanksgiving. I was set to go to Half Moon Bay the following morning to visit my Dad and his family, and my mother decided that would be the night to scare the living hell out of her 11-year-old daughter. She took my arms as I was going to bed, shook me, and told me I had a flesh-eating disease, and it was something I had brought on myself. She yelled and screamed at me to get dressed, and insisted on taking me to the emergency room. I cried, and begged and pleaded, begging her not to take me the hospital. She told me they were going to take me away if I didn't stop picking, and I remember running into my closet, locking the door, sobbing all night long, and hiding in there until morning. The picking only got worse after that. I picked until I couldn't feel my skin some days, and stayed up till the wee hours picking my skin so badly, that I had to go to bed with makeup on so my mother wouldn't ask questions. I got really good at hiding it, conveniently covering the parts of me I picked, and strategically never picking the areas like my legs that people would see in the summer months. 

Year and years of therapy later and I still pick. I've been struggling with Excoriation since I was three-years-old and most therapists don't have a clue about what Excoriation actually is. I go through a battle with myself ever single day. I start the day promising myself that I'm not going to pick today, and then something stressful will happen, and most of the time I don't even know I'm doing it until it's over. 

I hate that I pick my skin. I hate that I voluntarily make myself ugly. I hate that I have scars and that I'm unable to get a handle on my addiction. I hate that I'm ashamed when I look in the mirror. But I can't stop. I can't control my hands from ripping layers, upon layers from my skin. Excoriation is one of the most hidden addictions in American because no one knows what do with it. And when parents witness their children doing it, they rarely get to the bottom of why they're doing it. I love my parents dearly, but I do wish they did more investigating, and more research when I was a child, into the reasons behind my picking. I pick because my parents divorced when I was three years old and I was left feeling alone and like it was all my fault. I pick because I picked horrible boyfriends in high school who couldn't take no for an answer, and who felt like beating me anytime they got bored or frustrated. I pick because I'm insecure and although I have a highly confident exterior on the outside, I'm very frustrated on the inside. I pick because this addiction is not something someone just gets over. It's something I will be struggling with for the rest of my life.

I'm ready to rid my habit to the best of my ability and am researching and interviewing therapists who have actual experience with Excoriation addiction and who know the proper tools to help me. I want to share my message and story with the world because mental health and addiction is something that needs to be talked about and needs to be brought to the forefront.  

We can end this together if we instill the proper tools in our children and open up our eyes to find out why this disease happens at such a young age and what can be done to stop it. I work on my addiction every single day. I workout to keep me from getting overly anxious, I maintain a proper diet to help me stay calm, I do yoga because for me it's a form of therapy. I get my nails down so that they're thicker and cannot shred my skin as easily. I have a diligent skin care routine, although you'd never know it, but it helps keep me from picking late into the night.

I hope that this blog piece helps someone out there who may be struggling with the same addiction I am. I hope we can find a way to end this and help anyone who needs it. 

I could write pages and pages on my addiction, but for now, I'll leave it at this. I'm a happy person, I love my life, I'm beyond blessed and there is absolutely no sound reason for me to pick my skin. But the demons from my childhood creep up into me and take over. The depths of my despair cannot be explained through simple words. I will write many pieces on this addiction and what I'm doing to alleviate it and find a path to healing....

I'm here for you and would love anyone to reach out to me who struggles with excoriation or knows a friend who is struggling with it. No one should have to go through this alone. And while I don't have all of the answers, I know that talking about it helps immensely.

I'm here for you and I want to help.