The summer after I graduated from BYU, before I moved to Sugarhouse, I lived with my family and worked in Portland for four months. For some completely inexplicable reason, my face revolted to the thought. Instead, it decided to succumb to the worst case of facial cystic acne ever seen by doctors. I draw the lines of posting photos of how badly it really was because a) not that many photos exist and b) if you saw the unicorn horn begging to erupt from the surface of my forehead, I don't think you'd ever look at me the same again.
But don't fear. This email is not about my history of acne. My acne is only the cause of this memory, now I'll get to the effect.
I kept hoping the acne would go away. I figured my body needed time to adjust to the new climate, or I was just stressed about having graduated and not knowing what to do with my life, or a host of other things. After several months, I decided it was time to go see a dermatologist. Things went as routine, I picked up my prescriptions and went home.
2AM. I wake. Underarm is slightly itchy. I scratch it and roll over. Oh no. Said itch begs to be scratched again. I scratch harder. It's just so itchy. I fumble for the light, turn it on, and see the creepy that is my arm...
Hives. Or better yet, one, giant, enflamed hive. The other arm gets a little itchy. I reach to scratch it and see this:
I only have hives on my underarms. But they're spreading. Before I realize it, they've balooned my entire upper arm. I figure it's time to get Mom. Mom's always know what to do, right?
Mom knew we needed to get some Benodryl. Fast. The idea was good, but the execution was anything but flawless. See, my parents live in a suberb, but it still has a small town feel to it, and nothing, I repeat nothing, is open after 11PM in their town.
So there we are, driving around in the van, me writhing in pain because the itching was so intense. My arms look gross enough in the photos provided, but photos do not do the itching justice. We tried place after place and they were closed. Closed. CLOSED. As a desperate last measure, Mom called 911 to find out where the heck something was open.
The 911 people were wrong. The 24-hour pharmacy was not in fact a 24 hour pharmacy. Arms. Are. Dying.
Okay, cut to the chase. We find a 7-11. I triple dose on Benydrl (photos were taken after medication). Hot shower, more scratching. A call to the doctor. Sleep. Another trip to the doctor and new medication.
I am allergic to doxycycline and the cycline family of antibiotics. Do not give them to me, do not let a medical professional prescribe them to me. This is your obligation of being my friend. (I'm also allergic to prescription nasal spray while I'm at it.)
Hives are bad. Itching is bad. The worst part about this story is I developed another itching infection this same night. And acne was the direct influence of my no good, very-bad, horrible day. And I hate it.