It's over. Finito. Fini. Done and done. No more. I'm officially off the Roaccutane.
My apologies for a lack of proper update on month four. My digital SLR died a horrible and painful death so I'm having to borrow from various sources in order to take blogging pics which is a bit of a pain in the ol' bumholey.
To be honest though the progress between months three and four wasn't overly noticeable in my opinion. There was a continued slight improvement but it wasn't until I was nearing the end of month five that I had the magical moment...
... The moment when I looked in the mirror and thought. Damn gurl. Yo' skin is clear. I kid you mutherfucking not. It was a proper little jump up and down on the spot type moment of happiness and joy. I knew there had been progress, I knew things were improving, but I'd kind of stopped 'seeing' my face if that makes sense? I wasn't analysing it or pouring over every blemish, every spot every scar or patch of redness. I'd just kind of relaxed into the lull of the Roaccutane course, maybe it was 'a watched pot never boils' type attitude. I'm not sure. Anyway... It seems that while I wasn't looking clear skin kinda snuck up on me. BOOM! HIYA!
Honestly it's insane. I'm over the Moon and way out somewhere past Mars. My skin finally feels like MY SKIN. Not like some sort of alien being that's attached itself to my face whose soul purpose is to make me feel like a disgusting, antisocial outcast. It's the skin I used to sit on the tube and stare at. The skin I'd envy. Glorious glowing smooth skin that wasn't caked in makeup, lumpy as rice pudding and greaser than a quarterpounder WITH CHEESE.
The entire texture of my face has changed. It's soft, peachy, smooth. When I'm washing my dirty ol mug and sweeping my hands over my cheeks and forehead I honestly can't quite believe its mine. I used to cry in the shower, feeling the bumps, the painful mountainous landscape that was the source of so much sadness...
... BUT NO MORE!
... BUT NO MORE!
It's really hard to take photos that do justice to how things have changed. The problem being that though my skin is now clear, there is still a lot of red scarring from my years of acne suffering. Every red mark you see on these images is a scar (ok...there's a couple of brown freckles in there too. Sneaky sods.)
Also... I look a bit scary in these piccys. Apologies for that. Self timers, borrowed cameras and PJ's / a dressing gown do not add up to beautiful images. However the skin is the important thing. I've tried to get some different angles on the go to show you the smoothy smoothyness!
Oh and I have a vagina for an earlobe as I hadn't popped my plug in yet. Oops.
It's been a while since I finished the course now and things are only improving. The scars I have are fading gradually. I know it will take time and I'm not going to attack them with a bunch of harsh exfoliants or anything as I've been told my skin will remain sensitive for at least 6 months or so. The drug is still in my system, meaning I have to go for a pregnancy test in a couple of weeks. After that though I'm pretty much home free.
The side effects are easing. The rash on my forearms vanished almost overnight. My lips are starting to go back to normal (slowly) and my shins whilst still dry aren't looking like a cracked desert anymore. I feel brighter too. Like I have a bit more energy and vitality about me. I guess the nasty stuff is leaving my body and I'm sort of realigning. Levelling out.
Here's a couple more pics of me now, however in these I'm wearing the Nars Sheer Glow foundation (the shade is Mount Blanc if you are interested). It should hopefully help you differentiate between scarring and skin. A couple of the darker bigger scars shine through but most are covered.
I just cant explain how happy I am. I've had multiple people compliment me on my skin recently. Not just friends and family but strangers. I met someone at an event a few nights ago and having been in each others company for an hour or so she blurted out 'I just have to say you have fantastic skin.' I nearly cried. The change has been phenomenal. I feel like myself now. I feel like the person I knew I was but that previously had been hidden under a layer of self consciousness. I feel powerful, fierce, confident.
That might sound ridiculous to some of you but for me my skin had been the source of such upset, stress and depression for so long that it's being freed from some sort of repressive movement.
I'm guna stop now or I'll get poetic and shit and no one wants that.
I leave you with these thoughts. Roaccutane is a harsh muther fucker and as you all know it wasn't a decision I took lightly, but it was the right answer for me. I'd tried everything else, exhausted my options and this was my last resort. I know for others it's not been a nearly as easy. I have heard many tales of horrific experiences. I know people currently taking it that are finding the experience really hard and who have had far more adverse side effects. All I have done here and in my previous posts is let you know my personal journey.
Above all else the most important thing I wish to stress to everyone out there struggling with acne is that you are not alone. There is support and understanding everywhere. Your friends, family, online support forums, your doctor. Do not be afraid to ask for help and do not be afraid to be vulnerable. There are so many options for treatment and many people not need to get to this stage before the find something that works for them. Just be safe. Don't be stupid. Don't attack your skin with a hundred products and chemicals. Don't buy shit online that promises miracle results over night. Don't waste your money. Don't put yourself at risk. Seek professional advice. All things take time when it comes to skin and a positive attitude, patience and a support network are key.
Stay wicked all you beautiful people and THANK YOU for all the support and love and shared stories, worries, woes and hugs through out this experience. You are all wonderful human beings.