The Derm.

        I finally went to the dermatologist. This is after probably over a year of begging my parents, so that I didn't want to blog about it until after it happened. I read online that for many it's a very emotional experience, so I made sure to wear waterproof mascara. I was a little frightened, because for some it was so bad that they never went back after the first appointment. That sounds really dumb to me, because no matter how humiliating it is, serious acne can't be any better. They're professionals, and there to help you anyway.
         I went to the appointment without any foundation. This was probably the first time I have gone out in public without foundation since 8th grade, so like three or four years. I filled out paperwork for a bit, and waited for my name to be called. I expected the dermatologist to be a middle-aged woman for some reason, but it was some guy who seemed like he must be older than he looked. He looked like a plastic surgeon from the zip code 90210, but nope, just a dermatologist. 
        He asked me what I was there for. I was a bit taken aback, because first of all, it was written all over my face, literally. Secondly, I wrote it on the damn paperwork. Of course it must have been a formality, but it was unnerving. He began to explain to me about sebum clogging pores blah blah all of which I already knew. He pointed out the different types of acne on my face. That was the most uncomfortable part, him pointing to my face with a stick while I looked in the mirror. He finally put to rest my parents' assertions that I need to stop eating spicy food in order to get better. He put to rest my worries about dairy. Food has not been proven to have any effect on acne, and it is likely that it has no effect.
        I didn't need him for any medical information, I was well-versed with the help of google acne research. The only thing I needed him for was the medication. I thought he was supposed to ask me more questions, according to my research. It seemed like he just sort of looked at my face and within five to ten minutes he gave me prescriptions and was out the door. 
        One of them is Monodox, an antibiotic that is going to combat any infections and kill bacteria. It's a pill that I take twice a day. I was really worried about the cost of the prescriptions, but it is $10 for a month's supply. The other is Tazorac, a topical retinoid. I put it on once a day, at night. I doubted that it would dry out my skin, since nothing does, and it didn't seem to dry anything out for the first few days. I put on an extra dose, and that may have been a bad idea because now my skin feels tight and it's peeling but at least that means it's working, and dryness is a feeling I haven't had in a long time. It all is supposed to show results in four weeks. I wish it were faster, but I can already see improvement in my skin. I'm not breaking out like crazy every day now. So far I've gotten a small infection every other day, which is very much an improvement to my usual three or more large ones a day. I hope the side effects go away soon, as my antibiotics make me feel nauseous also. At least that means I eat less though.
        The dermatologist is a glimmer of hope in my rut of despair about my skin.


...And I'm Back.

        I thought I'd be glad to come home and finally relax, and I am. China was work work work, but at least everything was scheduled out and I just had to do it. Doing it wasn't hard or anything, but that structure was nice. It forced me to act.
        The moment I get home I feel this fog enveloping my chest. Now I can finally hang out with all those people I promised I'd hang out with. Now I don't have anymore excuses. I think about making plans and writing college essays and actually doing things, and I panic. Also, the first thing I did after I had access to Facebook again was stalk BD's profile. It's not painful to think of him or stalk him anymore. Okay, maybe just a tiny bit. But that's only because I want to be a part of his life again. It used to be that every other picture of him was with me. Once again, I'm watching everyone make plans, take photos, and live their lives without me. It's how I've always lived, but after being one of the most active, most responsible, and - perhaps this is just me being ultra-cocky - most well-liked members of the volunteer group, I feel left out.
        I think I deserve to be able to have fun. Actually, I know I deserve it. I want to experience it all, but I'm also afraid. My inaction is crippling. I fear that China was only a temporary distraction from a fixed problem. I hope not. Perhaps it's just that it's 5AM. Things will look better later. They always look better later. 

I'm Back.

        As you may or may not have guessed, blogger was not accessible in China, unfortunately. My flight left Shanghai at 4:10PM and arrived at 4:35PM. That time difference is kind of mind boggling and cool.
        Teaching in Chengdu was a lot of work, but it really paid off. I knew it would be an amazing experience, but I just didn't know how much. I really bonded with so many random people. I just seriously love people. Shopping in China was nice too.
         I've decided that from now on I really want to try as many things as possible. That's a tall order for Miss Super Introvert Who Doesn't Hang Out With People. There's such a big difference between reading about something and actually experiencing it.