It Takes an Army to Defeat an Army

3 March 2019

Changes in hearing, blurred vision, joint pain, stomach pain, liver damage and depression were just a few of the side effects listed on the RxList website for the drug Isotretinoin, an acne treatment popularly known as Accutane. “Is it worth it?” I asked myself on a daily basis as the number of little red bumps continued to increase on the surface of my face. Walking through the acne products aisle at Sephora was like stepping into my own bathroom. At one time or another, I bought each product in an attempt to clear my skin. After multiple visits with my pediatrician and several prescribed topical acne treatments, I decided to try the “all natural route.” One trip to the local Foodworks store, and I found myself drowning in homemade honey facials, taking an abundance of daily vitamins and restraining myself from consuming dairy. A month later, the army of acne had completely invaded and conquered my face. My mother called for an appointment with a physician’s assistant at the dermatology office; the soonest available appointment was in July, two months away.

With in the months prior to the appointment, there was not one inch upon my face without a pimple. As the number of pimples increased, my self confidence decreased. Applying make up became necessary, yet useless since nothing could cover what I was determined to hide. Cleansing my face became difficult without breaking open the excessively tender and infected areas. Sleeping on a memory-foam pillow, my favorite, was impossible due to the pressure it put on the acne. The worst was how I felt mentally. I felt like a failure. Every attempt to clear my skin created more acne.

It Takes an Army to Defeat an Army Essay Example

I avoided the subject of my acne with others, especially my friends since each of them had nearly perfect completions. However, at night, when the makeup was off and I was alone in my room, I realized the judgement I put upon myself was the problem, not the judgement of others. I was the only soldier fighting because I hid my emotions, told everyone that I was fine, when in fact I was breaking, not because I did not like my appearance but because I had convinced myself that I was alone in the process.

In health class during the fourth quarter of my sophomore year, when the acne was the worst, one of the topics my teacher covered was acne. “Everyone develops acne in their teenage years,” he announced. He continued to share the natural remedies to heal acne, which I had already embraced, but all had failed. Throughout the discussions, I could not ignore the fact that I was the only student in the room with more than the typical two pimples on the cheek. I questioned whether the topic was directed at me and if everyone in the class was glaring at the blemishes covering my face. “Just a little soap and water twice a day and acne should heal within two weeks. There is certainly no need to introduce prescribed medications to clear acne,” my health teacher informed. He made it sound so easy. Throughout the discussion, I thought of the year and a half long process I had been going through to heal the acne. I felt the need to reveal the fact that acne is not that easy to heal. Instead of making a scene in class, I hid my emotions until the next day. It was Friday, and I was hosting dinner for my friends, as we did each week, alternating from house to house. I shared the emotional disruption the acne had caused and my worries about going on Accutane with my closest friends. “Oh you don’t need to worry about going on Accutane, Lizzy. My mom did when she was in highschool, and she was fine,” my friend Olivia explained.

“So did my dad,” my friend Jenna claimed.

Suddenly I felt relief, I did not have to hide my problems. Instead, I was able to talk about the difficulties I faced and my fear of going on Accutane.

On the appointment day I was shaking when my mother and I walked into the dermatology office. The physician’s assistant immediately recommended Accutane. The following month I began the treatment, which came with a mandatory birth control prescription, Ipledge account, monthly blood work appointments and gallons of moisturizers and drinking water.

Afterjust a few weeks on the medication a schoolmate approached me and said, “Wow Lizzy, your skin is looking great!”

Once I recruited the strongest soldiers I know; my friends, family and physician’s assistant,I defeated the acne army.

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