laser peel recovery update

today it’s been exactly 3 weeks since i had my periorbital resurfacing and laser peel. i’ve waited for time to pass before making any pronouncements about the merits or demerits of the procedure, but as the days go by i’ve come closer to forming an opinion and today i can truly say, i’m pissed!

i’m startled every time i see myself in a mirror when i’m not wearing make-up. my face is hyper-pigmented and marked with dark striations so that it looks like i’ve flown face-first into a grid. when i’m wearing make-up, it’s ok, but i, who am used to going without foundation whenever i’m not working, now do not dare leave the house without what is essentially a mask to hide what feels like disfigurement. i’m beginning to feel really angry and resentful at the doctor who did this. this is not what i expected. it’s not what i signed up for (though i suppose in a way i did. there’s a good reason they get you to sign a waiver before the procedure).

i’ve had the odd spot of hyperpigmentation when i’ve done tca peels before, but this looks like i’ve had lines tattooed all over my face! i’m not against tattoos, but i’m not maori and i wouldn’t choose to mark my face. i mean, my face, and keeping my skin in good condition, is a huge part of how i earn my living!  if you think i’m exaggerating, here are both a before, and an after pic. you tell me if you’d spend a fortune to go from what i looked like before, to what i look like now.

a candid no make-up shot from before the peel. look at the quality of my skin.

a candid no make-up shot from before the peel. look at the quality of my skin.

now this is what i'm left with, 3 weeks post peel

now this is what i'm left with 3 weeks post peel

when i went to see the doctor on friday, he said it looked “fine”, it would go away.  then he gave me a prescription for hydroquinone. when i asked why one side extends so much farther than the other, below my chin, he paused for a moment, then said, i suppose meant facetiously, “because i can’t measure!”. excuse me?!

i’m prepared to give the recovery a little while longer, but right now, i certainly wouldn’t recommend this. maybe i’m being impatient, but i feel  angry and resentful and pretty damned stupid too boot, especially when i’m so ambivalent about whether one ages gracefully or “rages against the dying…”. however, even in my ambivalent inconsistency, i’d say, if one is going to opt for some kind of expensive procedure, it should really be an enhancement, not leave one scarred and disfigured. and i’m certainly feeling scarred – in more ways than one.