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My Acne Battle Story (Hope To Cheer You Up!)

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It's my first post!
I have read a lot of stories here. Some are sad, some are hopeful. But no matter how you look today, all I want to say is you're beautiful. All of us are beautiful creations and soul and nobody's ugly. It's all in your mind.
Let me tell my maybe, 10 year battle with acne until now, and I'm hopeful the battle will be over soon.
When I was a child, my mom told me everyone kept telling me how I looked so cute and like a kid with a foreign blood (I looked white.)
I started having acne when I was grade 6, 10 years ago. I'm 22 now, a registered nurse, and I must say, my acne has improved considerably in the past years, though I still get a few but manageable breakouts sometimes.
It was terrible when it all started. My face, 2 arms (upper), back, and chest were all filled with acne. 10 years ago it was all red, bumpy, painful I guess, like the usual things you can see on the pictures, but I now that I'm 22 I realized that when I was in my puberty it didn't really bother me. It felt like it didn't exist at all (even it was during those times it was worst.) I think I just went on, kept myself busy studying and earning honors, taking the position of a school paper Editor-In-Chief and competing on contests (modesty aside). It left deep scars that I can see until now, but in those deep holes, I buried gold and covered them with hope and resilience.
Then I graduated elementary and began high school. My acne continued, I still really like went on with my life, but I was aware that some people around me have indifference when it comes to that. Maybe some would tease me behind my back or laugh at me without my knowledge, but I remember in high school I somehow enjoyed what they say the one of the most colorful parts of your life. I remember one of my friends said that our teacher said to the class when I was absent, ''Don't tease Emmanuel, what's he's going through is not easy.'' Well yeah, but I'm just like, I'm not asking for anyone's sympathy as my myself do not feel that my life is ruined because of this. I continued being an honor student, becoming an Editor-In-Chief again, competing on Science and English quiz bees. (modesty aside.)
If you ask me how am I able to act brave and be able to go on during those times, I'll answer you: CONFIDENCE. It's all that I have. I believe a confident man is able to pull of everything, make bad appear good, I guess it has become a defensive mechanism for me, that if I know something is going in my face I have to double my confidence so I could go on like nothings happening.
Then I entered college. I took up Nursing. My acne still persisted, but then I had to go through some cystic acne sometimes. So when I was about to enter 2nd year, when we have to go and officially enroll to the College Of Nursing, there was a doubt. I asked myself, will they accept me in, because I have acne? Do I look dirty and are we supposed to look flawless clean?
Before that I applied for a scholarship. Funny that the interviewers asked what happened to my face, and questioned my possibility to enter the College Of Nursing. I didn't get it, they gave it to an I.T. student. To cut it off, I made it in the College Of Nursing. But you know, way back then and sometimes until now whenever I get a job (22 here yet on my 5th company already haha) I still get nervous during physical examinations, like the Doctor will always see my acne and I'm like, hope this will not hamper my plans.
It's during college days that I experienced and felt all the consciousness grow and how some people will try to hurt you using your acne as your imperfection. But they all did this when I was on my back; I guess nobody can say this in front of my face. Why? Because they knew I'll get back to them, some of my friends tell me I'm a monster, in a positive way like this monster rules or what. Again, spent my life studying in college, never went to a club, bar, got drunk or have sex. As a result, I'd become a candidate for Cum Laude in the end. I guess when people see you have respect and regards for yourself, they'll treat you the same.
Oh I remember most cystic acne went on during my 3rd year college, when we started having duties already in hospitals. I'd walk with cystic acne near my eyes, cheek like I even feel something's heavy near my eyes. Jan. 1 2012 I guess me, dutying in the operating room filled with nodular acne on face, and neck. So I opted to finally, return to the Dermatology dept. of our chosen hospital and 75% of my misery stopped!
EPIDUO + DUAC GEL + Cetaphil Cleanser + Lymecycline (Tetralysal) + Intralesional Injections. Yeah. Those saved me and using them religiously put me in a happy place where I'll only get nothing more than 6 -10 breakouts on my face. I started on Epiduo, and I guess, this is the Holy Grail cream that changed my life. I used it for 2-3 months and the results were amazing! I don't get those nodular acne anymore, only small ones that goes quickly. After on Epiduo my doctor switched me to DUAC (Benzoyl + Clindamycin) for the big ones, and it worked too! I've been using them as a maintenance, but the Lymecyline antibiotic I took mostly for 2 weeks when I had major breakouts before. Been using Cetaphil Cleanser for 2 years now, my room is filled with empty bottles I deserve a loyalty award. haha. Did IL injections for cystic ones that rarely happens.
Now, I still get few breakouts sometimes, especially when I'm stressed or commuting everyday to work with polluted air, but I'm able to last a month or 2 without anything.
Right now my regimen consists of Cetaphil cleanser, Duac, Dickinson's Witch Hazel toner w/c is another Holy Grail, Snail Recovery gel by Mizon before sleeping (My another fave Holy Grail), I've used already Tokyo Love Soap original which is a Holy Grail whitening tore lessening soap.
What I wanted to say is do not surrender. I'm with you, as a lot of times I was vulnerable just like you, I cried in restrooms cubicles, in the jeepneys, walking, in the rain, I wanted to surrender, 'end it all', quit, do not look to the mirror and go outside. But I threw myself into doing things with #graceunderpressure. I've been working for 2 years already and able to sustain the high maintenance 'clear' skin. Be strong, as easy said than done, but do not let your life revolve on acne and draw people to define you with what you have in your face. No. Go on, enjoy life, pursue what you do, like I'm into modelling, (facebook.com/hausofvlmnt if you check it out), do not be ashamed. So what if some of you are edited, if you look good without or even with acne? It's still the same person as you in the picture! I've already had 4 girlfriends now, and they loved me despite
There is always hope, one day the battle will be over, and we will make it through even if we almost barely survived. We're all in this together, and sometimes, we just have to think some could be having even worst acne than us. Some are even handicapped. I was coming home 12 midnight then I saw a handicapped, and even a dwarf guy who's still selling flowers at night and still smiling. I was like to myself, ''D*mn, I'm even luckier than him, I think I'm so devastated that I forgot some people are barely having any.''
Do not surrender, keep going on, and once it's over, you can press rewind like nothing happened. South Korea is there, Thailand is there, U.S. is there, those countries offer excellent skin resurfacing, like nothing happened. If you look good, you will always look good. Despite that acne. It's never too late. Keep positive, and avoid emotionally stressing yourself, as I think whenever I'm stressed, they tend to come out. :)
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