My life has never been the cookie cutter life. In fact, my friends and I have always said we wish we were “clean girls.” We defined clean girls as girls that always had the perfect outfits to go out – the perfect brunch outfit, the perfect work outfit. They always matched (even socks, and panties and bras, JUST BECAUSE… not for anyone, just for themselves) THEY LOVE to workout. They floss every night and have sparkly white teeth. They always make everything look so easy, fresh, and clean.

The clean girl concept went beyond simple physical things. It was a deeper meaning. It was the girl that just didn’t have hard shit happen to her. It was the girl that hadn’t seen the darkness and known it in her core. The clean girl, was able to be the “clean girl” because she had time to do that. She wasn’t busy surviving in her life. She had more ease and more stability growing up.

We weren’t that. We had known a different world. Most of us are Latina women, and our culture has a specific story, specific roots, and specific pains. We even sounded different and grew up different than a lot of the the other girls we considered “clean girls.” Our world was messier. It’s not to say their lives weren’t messy too, they probably were. But it was a different brand of messy.

We decided we weren’t clean girls, we were messy girls. We decided messy girls are the girls that get sh*t done, but not in the perfect way. Our eyes tell it all.

You can always know a girl that has gone through it because there is a wisdom in her. A spark that goes beyond words.

  • We were abused.
  • Our parents were abused.
  • We dated drug dealers.
  • We cursed.
  • We slept with our makeup on.
  • Sometimes we didn’t brush our teeth and sometimes still don’t (I know gross, my mom is a dental hygienist she would kill us!)
  • We were ‘on the go, in a rush girls.
  • It was hard for us to get shit done so when we did, it wasn’t perfect.
  • We always showed up. It was just messy.

For so long I (and we) fought to be different. It was subconscious even, but we knew we didn’t want all the chaos and pain. We wanted peace, we just couldn’t find it.

I compared myself for not having it all together, but I was busy. I was busy trying to connect to my soul, in a time when my world was in shambles. I was busy trying to survive, and keep a spark of light alive amidst the darkness that I felt in my mind, and saw in my life. I was busy doing other things, big things. I didn’t have time to think about being perfect because I was sitting in my room crying and wishing that I wasn’t being abused and ignored. No time to make perfect curls in your hair when your heart is carrying such pain.

All of my friends in their own ways, were doing the same. The father of one of my best friends died in a drug deal, two of them are bi-polar, the other had to flee the country. It was hard. It was messy. We saw hardship really early on. I was busy nurturing my heart, in the best way I knew how, and trying to cope.

When you see life without the sparkles and know pain from an early age, you perceive the world as a scary place and get pushed to grow up. Our mindset had to be different to survive then. Now, I make a note to say, that admist this drama we also had massive love and so much support in other ways, but the mess and the drama was there too. And for this conversation that is what I am focusing on, because I want this to break the silence around that topic. To give voice to the dark the messy and the painful parts of my lives and all of our lives.

We all have different paths in life. We are born with different vibes and my point here is to say:

@CosmicChristine (Click to Tweet!)

I’m a messy girl, a wild and passionate woman. A loving, complex, deep, sensual, and soulful woman. I’ve scraped my knees and I always rise. Do I love pretty things and ease? OF COURSE! And as I go through this process I am able to enjoy more pleasure. I am able to take the time to do the little things, like buy a cute outfit and get manicures, but this is new. Because I was busy surviving before. That is my story. NOW I am ready and have been for some time, though I still consider myself a proud messy girl 🙂 I am now ABLE to do things differently because I gave myself time to heal in my own way.

You can’t rush healing. It has to be your process. You can encourage yourself to grow but healing happens in it’s own time.

Perhaps the areas that are a little messier right now, you judge, and you compare, and think ‘why can’t I fix this’ or ‘why does she or he have it together and I don’t’. But for the love of goddess, don’t do that. Look at your path and just love yourself, messy and all. Be proud and let that love guide you to heal and to grow in your own way.

Love all the messy. In the messy there is magic.

Now I want to hear from you! What’s one area of your life or in your personality that you have judged as too ‘messy’ and therefore not good enough, that you can now OWN and love up? I would love to hear from you in the comments.

Christine Gutierrez is a psychotherapist, advice columnist, speaker, author, poet, and founder of an online hub that features psychologically-savvy and soulful advice, articles, videos, private consultations, workshops, retreats (both live and virtual), radio appearances, and television projects. “Ancient wisdom with a modern twist” is the motto. She has been featured in TimeOut NY Magazine, Latina Magazine as “The Future 15: The Healer,” Yahoo Health, Ebony Magazine, Cosmopolitan for Latinas, The Conversation, Cosmopolitan Magazine, Ricki Lake, Lifetime TV, and more. You can also follow Christine on TwitterFacebook and Instagram. And sign up for her weekly newsletter at: Want a free 15 min consultation call? Click here to set it up.

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Image courtesy of Luis Hernandez.