Friday, August 10, 2012

Butter Face

You know how just about every person has that one thing with their bodies they just can't stand? How no matter what they do, it doesn't seem to ever look how they want it too? For some it's their mid-section, I think we've all had the ever glorious 'muffin top'. Maybe it's the thunder thighs that never seem to shrink. Some people hate their hands or their toes, some struggle with their hair. This list could go on and on.

Though I feel like I've experienced all those things, the one area that has never been up to par and has given me serious emotional and physical scarring is my face. Ever heard the phrase 'Butter Face'? Definition 'Everything on that girl looks good, BUT HER FACE. Yes, that is me. Every time I look in the mirror all I see is an ocean of pimples, bumps, redness, blackheads, ACNE.

Growing up, I had the normal teenager pimples but nothing like what I've experienced from about my early twenties and still experiencing today. I mean, I'm 31 damn years old. I should have other things to worry about besides acne. IT'S JUST NOT FAIR. I have good months, ok months and extremely bad months. I realize my inability to relax about my skin is one of the things that keeps it from healing. But I'm convinced that's not the only cause. I've spent the better part of the last 12 years researching, experimenting and trying just about everything out there in an attempt to clear my skin. Here is just a glimpse:

  • Pro Active
  • Skin ID Neutragena
  • Regular Esthetician (painful hour long treatments of extractions, needles and chemicals) visits
  • Chemical peels
  • Micro
  • Vitamins
  • Diet (No coffee, large amounts of green tea, no dairy)
  • Cleanses (pills, shakes, fasting)
  • Retin A
  • Prescriptions (tetracyclene, doxycyclene - all that come with wonderful side effects like yeast infections)
  • Thousands of dollars in facial scrubs, acids, and benzoil peroxides.
  • Baking Soda wash
  • Moisturizers 
  • Dermatologist - Must confess I don't go regular because I HATE The way they make me feel and they treat my acne like a freakin teenager. HELLO I'm 30 not 15 and Retin A is not going to clear my skin.  
With each attempt, some things lightened the acne, NOTHING seems to clear my skin to where I want it and with each failed attempt my emotional roller coaster is killing me from the inside out. Here are just a few way acne takes over my life
  • I DO NOT leave my house with out make up on. 
  • I can only use a certain type of make up (mineral powders, etc)
  • I wash my face twice a day
  • White pillow cases and wash every week
  • I don't touch my face during the day
  • I don't like it when the kids or Cory touch or kiss my face :( All I can think is the possible germs that are going to cause another breakout
  • I spend hours in the mirror sometimes picking, sometimes tearful. 
  • I have to sometimes put ice on my face to relieve the large painful nodules of acne
  • When I'm in the shower washing my face, I feel all the bumps and get tearful. I wonder if I'll ever know what it feels like to have smooth skin. 
  • I feel like my acne is all people see - It's all I see. 
  • If I'm talking to you, chances are I'm looking at your skin. Constantly comparing my skin to others. 
I've been researching drastic approaches to acne for women my age. I've made an appointment with a new OB/GYN to get  hormone testing done. I am a true believer that my acne is from the inside and something is not right. I also found I have several other symptoms
  • Facial Hair - Ok, seriously I wax my chin at least once a week. It's effin ridiculous
  • Lack of sex drive - this does not do wonders to the marriage my friends
  • Mood swings
  • Lack of appetite
  • Depression
  • Lack of hair growth where it should actually be growing
I go in September for testing and I'm hoping to find something there. Maybe I can find out the root cause and help cure my disease. Yes, chronic acne is a disease. I also went to see my dermatologist and had a tearful heart to heart. Basically I described all the things above and simply stated, I can't do this any more. I want to be put on Accutane. I'm done having babies, Cory's had a vasectomy and I'm already on birth control to help my skin. There's no reason not to try - well maybe other than the side effects. 

I have to take blood tests every 30 days before I can get my RX, I have to stay out of the sun. It will dry me up so bad I probably won't be able to wear contacts, I'll have to have another prescription to help with my dry lips. My face will get bright red and worse before it gets better. I'll be on Accutane for 6 months. From what I've researched, women my age on the drug had a high percentage of success. Some women said they couldn't believe they waited so long and a few 20% said they had no success. I talked with my doctor and with the combination of hormone therapy and accutane I should see dramatic results. Well, this drama queen is past READY for results. Worse case scenario I might have to do a few rounds before I see my skin where I want to see it. 

One thing I can't believe is how much it takes to get the damn drug in the first place. I have to sign a contract stating I'm on two forms of birth control. Apparently husbands vasectomy doesn't count so I have to sign I'm on a oral contraceptive as well as condoms. After my first blood/pregnancy test, I wait 31 days then have another blood test. Then I have 7 days to get my RX or I have to start all over again. I have to notify my DR if I have 
  • Migraines - Apparently it could cause swelling of the brain
  • Stomach aches
  • Muscle/Joint aches
  • dizzy spells
  • Psychosis
  • Thoughts of suicide
To some, and even reading it back to myself seems over the top. I mean who in their right mind would go through all of this? Well, the simple answer to that question is me. I would. I am so unhappy in my own my skin and have been for so long. I think that is why I put so much into everything else about me. I spend money on clothes to look my best, to be in style. I spend time every morning on my hair, make up, overall appearance to take away the focus of my skin. I work hard to be great at everything to compensate for something I have no control over. 

So, here's to another chapter and hopefully a different ending than all the others. I will not be posting pictures of my face. I hate it enough in real life, I don't need to see it on a computer screen. And, if my skin does clear I don't want to be reminded of how horrible it was before. 


Rob'n'Mon said...

I'm sorry that you've had such a hard time with this. It's really not fair at all. Good luck!

Melissa, Benton, and Cambree said...

Man oh man. Where to start? Miss Kimberli, I can relate to your frustrations. I feel the same way about losing weight and my midsection. I think for sure you notice it WAY more than anyone else does. I know you have a complex about it, but really nobody else notices it like you do.

Here's my feelings on Accutane. Do not, I repeat DO NOT get on it. I have a friend who I've been friends with for 15+ years who was on Accutane and is in a lawsuit with the company. That's why they are making you sign your life away. She has had SO MANY ISSUES it's not even funny. She has had many, many surgeries. They told her she couldn't have kids because of it, so you can only imagine what it does to your body. It is scary stuff. She said she wouldn't have ever used it if she knew what would have happened to her. I'm talking about having her intestines removed (she has to be extremely careful about what she eats), wearing a colostomy bag, and so much more. This is really scary stuff, I would stay as far away from it as you possibly can. If you want I could ask my friend to email/call you with all her side effects to scare you a little more ;)

Sorry friend, I would rather have you healthy than have a smooth face. You are so pretty and I don't think you have a "butter face" as you referred yourself as having. Just think about it for me, please!

Kallie said...

Kim, you are beautiful inside and out! I know how it feels to have a part of you that you cannot change no matter how hard you try. I think if it will make you happy to know you tried, and you and Cory both agree on it; then it is worth it. Hopefully it works for you, I am keeping my fingers crossed. But please don't get suicidal. Keep us update please! BTW, I guess I can be referred to as a "Butter Butt!"

Amber said...

My heart just broke when I read this. Good luck at the apointment and know that you are beautiful inside and out!

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