Saturday, 4 July 2015

15 MONTHS... and life can be tough sometimes

I'm feeling a bit rusty due to my last post being nearly 5 months ago. A lot has happened in the last 5 months and I'm not to sure where I should start...

[Warning: Its going to be a long one!]

Life over the last 5 months...

21 Feb
In my last post I was 7.5 weeks pregnant and super excited about our little jelly bean. I wasn't getting much morning sickness if any at all and my skin was almost glowing... well as close as you can get to glowing while in TSW anyway.

16 March
I decided to take the job that I was offered as Senior Graphic Designer at a little studio in town. I'd told them that I was pregnant when they interviewed me and I'm so grateful that despite this they still wanted me as part of their team!!

26 March 
We went for our 12 week ultrasound to see that our little bean was growing as he should be. This was probably the first sign of trouble as the lady who did the ultrasound wanted us to come back the following week. So we did.

2 April
Had our next (3rd) ultrasound and this is when she voiced her concerns about him. He was much smaller than he should have been for 13 weeks.

The next 3 weeks were the hardest, most stressful and scary weeks of my entire life. We were referred to the hospital, had multiple scans and specialist visits. We found out our bean was a little boy and we also found out he had spina bifida among other problems and were told that he probably wouldn't survive much longer.

19 April
At 15 weeks and 3 days I started bleeding, we went up to the hospital, he miscarried at 11.45 in the morning. I can honestly say that this has been one of the hardest things I have ever experienced in my whole life. This was also my Grandpa's birthday (who passed away about 11 years ago) so we named him John after my Grandpa.

We took him home with us and I couldn't put the little box that he was in down for the next 2 days. Its the strangest thing loosing a baby. And its not something that many people talk about I've come to realise. So many people that I've talked to since then have either had it happen to themselves or know someone who has.

I figured that it was probably my fault that this had happened because at the end of December I'd run out of my Folate and B12 (which I was taking for my MTHFR gene mutation) so I wasn't taking this in the first 2 months of pregnancy which is the most critical time to be taking this supplement, which I thought had resulted in him having spina bifida. The doctor had agreed with me on this and thought that there wasn't any need for chromosome testing. We decided to get the testing done anyway.

After waiting 10 long weeks to get our results back, last Wednesday we went up to the hospital and the doctor told us that our baby boy had a chromosome defect called Triploidy. This is when 2 sperm enter the egg at the same time resulting in 3 sets of chromosomes instead of 2... he also said that most of these babies miscarry much earlier and all of the abnormalities that they told us about were because of this.. and that there was no increased risk of this happening next time.

All of this was a lot to take in. But long story short... in the beginning I felt like it was my fault and was pretty worried that there would be a likely chance that this would happen again.. but its not and there isn't!! Big weight off my shoulders. Our little boy was just a miracle baby who hung on a bit longer than most.

In between all this my Gran who I was really close to passed away as well.

Its been a hard year.

Amongst all this sadness I still feel so extremely grateful that I've got a loving, caring partner and family, I've got my job which has been great and all my new team mates are so supportive and that I've got a wedding to plan and keep my mind occupied.

So now I've got my roller coaster of a life update out of the way it's time to talk skin...

Jan, Feb and March my face/neck skin was pretty good condition (everywhere else is 100% normal). Not perfect but still a million times better than I was in Nov/Dec. After the 12 week scan I think my skin deteriorated a little which was probably stress related.


15 March


Immediately after we lost baby boy my skin improved again.. I'm not sure if they gave my anything at the hospital that they shouldn't have or what but by the end of the week it started going downhill again..

- Inflammation
- Shedding
- Itchy after showers
- Sores that wouldn't heal
- Red itchy spots that looked almost like pimples

This all lasted about 4 weeks.


3 May - In the midst of my Anniversary Flare

12 May
Flare died down - I'm going to say that this was my anniversary flare as it finished 13 months TSW
- Spots gone
- Shedding gone
- Inflammation gone
- Itchyness after shower mostly gone
- Can smile normally without skin FEELING tight

Only trouble spots left were my knuckles on the two middle fingers of my right hand, as well as my TSW moustache and monobrow.

1 June
Started using zinc on my TSW moustache and monobrow everyday to try and heal these stubborn bits which today are pretty darn good.

JULY - Today

So its been an interesting year so far. Some good some bad. I've learnt a lot about myself and whats important to me along the way. Hopefully the rest of the year will be better.

Saturday, 21 February 2015

10.5 MONTHS and a MAAHOSIVE surprise

Skin wise all has been great ever since beginning of last month when things "magically" took a turn for the better. Theres still been general improvements, less reddening, less shedding, improved elasticity etc. The rest of my body from neck down is 100% normal now.. it has been for a while but I'm not to sure if I've really talked about the rest of my skin much. My stomach feels amazingly smooth and I don't even get the little rashy bits behind my knees any more.

So my MAAHOSIVE surprise and why I can see now how things "magically" got better all of a sudden is I'm currently 7.5 weeks pregnant!!!!!!!!! OMG I actually was gobsmacked when I found out but it all makes sense now.... these baby hormones have done wonders for my skin!!!

Life has been incredibly crazy/complicated/insane for the last 3 weeks since we found out. We were supposed to be getting married 7th November... I booked our honeymoon to South America the day before I found out... I'd just been offered a new full-time job (I've been out of work since I started TWS - just working on my own little business and doing part time work here and there) and now to top it all off we've got another unexpected guest coming to the wedding who is "due" to arrive 4 weeks beforehand... knowing my luck he or she will be 2 weeks late!

My brain feels like a 5 lane roundabout somewhere in South East Asia right now... Things going everywhere.

We've decided to move the wedding to January which gives us 3 months to settle into parenthood before we tie the knot... I've cancelled our honeymoon.. Thinking we'll probably have to go somewhere a little closer to home haha... I've taken the full time job. This was a pretty big decision for me but when they showed me the contract (and the pay rate) I had to do it. I've not had any morning sickness at all and I really want to be able to get into more of a financially stable situation, with me being off work last year our savings are looking pretty poorly at the moment.

I'm pretty excited now but my initial reaction, and I still have moments of it, was talk about timing!!! We hadn't been trying at all and I'd actually been told that I'd have problems having children. So yip, completely mind blown.

But getting back to the main topic. It does make me wonder what is going to happen after the pregnancy... Is my skin going to continue to be normal or am I going to go back into flaring again???? I wish I knew the answer.

Time for a quick photo update...

Day 320!!

Monday, 12 January 2015

9 MONTHS... 280 days

I'm behind on my skin update for month 9... I completely skipped my month 8 update... and I think thats mainly because after going downhill a bit I was pretty stagnant for the most part.

After my last update (7 months) when my skin was in a fairly good place I went down hill slightly and stayed there basically right up until early last week when there was literally an overnight improvement.

So basically between month 7 - 9 my neck and face went back to shedding similar amounts to maybe month 6ish... I had a spot oozing on my neck for over a week that didn't want to heal... every morning I HAD to have a shower to exfoliate all the dead skin off (just rubbing gently with my fingertips)... stinging in the shower... my neck just felt tight and sore all the time so I was back to taking 2 ibuprofen every night and most times during the day as well. Basically from the shoulders up, I felt sore, red and swollen. Definitely not the same as the early days but I think it just seemed so bad because of how far I had come.

Diet and supplement wise I have been pretty shocking since maybe mid-December. Sugar, gluten, dairy, take-aways, you name it. My skin had already taken a turn before this and I kind of just felt like "Screw it! Its Christmas/ New Years! I'm going to eat whatever the hell I want to eat!!" (I even had a few sneaky vodkas on New Years Eve, and I hadn't had any alcohol for 8 months), I also ran out of all my supplements right before christmas and with money a bit tight at the moment I haven't actually invested in any more yet - Probiotics, Folic Acid (Vit B9), Vit B12, Fish Oil caps and Apple Cider Vinegar... typical that I'd run out of everything all at the same time!!! But interestingly, I've still had this major improvement without all the good stuff.

I'm definitely going to get back into my supps when I can afford to again because they definitely weren't doing me any harm and who knows... If I hadn't run out what would my skin be like now??

I'm not really using the clofibrate ointment anymore. I think the repair lotion was working but once again, I ran out and can't afford to get any more. I've used a bit of sunblock the last few weeks... my partner and I have been out fishing and the sun is so fierce in summer over here! I've noticed that the sunblock dries my face and neck out pretty bad though.

So! On the flip side... since early last week I now feel so much better. I DON'T have to shower and exfoliate every morning any more. My face/neck area is barley shedding at all. I've stopped taking the ibuprofen. That morning that I woke up, it was actually the pain that I notice first had disappeared, because every TSW warrior knows, when turning your neck theres only a certain distance you can turn it before you get that sharp tight feeling, warning you not to go any further.

So without further ado... PHOTOS!

8th December 2014 - Day 244
I didn't get many photos over the last 2 months... but this one about sums them up

9th January 2015 - Day 276 

Last weekend fishing with my BFF

I think this is going to be a great year! A million times better than last year!! This is the year...

Happy healing thoughts to everyone out there in the bolgosphere.

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

7 MONTHS - 220 Days

I hit the 7 month mark last Thursday so I'm only a little behind with this months update!

Over the last month my whole 'self' has improved... My skin (mostly), my sleep, my attitude, my energy levels. The only thing that I'm still lacking a wee bit is motivation to get out of my comfort zone where I have created a nice safe little bubble. I feel like I'm just waiting to turn that last corner where my skin feels and looks completely normal again and I can come out of my little hiding hole and yell at the top of my lungs... LOOK AT ME!! It actually gives me excited little butterflies when I think about how that is going to feel :)

But alas.. I always have in the back of my mind the anniversary flare and as those months creep closer I just feel more and more nervous. I feel like I've reached such a great point skin wise at the moment and feel like I'm just teetering on the edge of a cliff. Waiting to fall.

My face and neck have 90% stopped shedding, I'll wake up in the morning and my skin will be a little dry and lacking in moisture but there won't be any skin flakes anywhere. I've not taken any sleeping or pain medication for nearly 3 weeks. I haven't had any night sweats in a month. I'm not tired any more at all. I can usually jump in bed and be asleep by 10.30ish maybe waking up once at around 1/2am.

The only thing that I still get really bothered by is if I put the Clofibrate ointment on my face and neck without having a shower first. The ointment still seems to make my 'quite skin' become 'alive, crazy skin' so I try to only shower and apply the ointment once a day. Its almost like having a shower desensitises the area from being a parched desert which allows the moisturiser to go on without creating a crazy burning sensation like millions of little fire ants running all over my face.

This is me last weekend...

The flash pics are to show how few red spots I have left.

Unfortunately I think I'm a little redder today. And I feel like I've been a little itchier this week.. which all could be down to hormones but I guess only time will tell. 

I also think that the one thing that will really mean that I'm close to healing is either not having the dry skin at all and my skin oils return on my face and neck, or I can comfortably apply the Clofibrate ointment with no problems. 

One thing that I do love doing is adding comparisons!!!

Only a short [and all over the show] update this time... didn't really have that much to report on. 

Here's to happy healing!!

Thursday, 9 October 2014

6 MONTHS!! I made it :)

To be exact 6 months and 4 days or 186 days. Any way slacker over here hasn't been updating as I usually have been just because the last 6 weeks have been SO busy. We've moved house, had our engagement party, I finally brought a car after being carless for the last 6 months, my little business is really starting to take off and life in general is starting to seem a little more normal than it was at the beginning of all this.

Heres a wee (long) recap of whats been going on skin wise over the last 6 weeks...

Days 130 - 138  After getting the Clofibrate Ointment and Repair lotion my skin was relatively calmish for a week or so then I looked like this...

Day 138

I think day 138 was the start of my next flare up. The night sweats came back again after being gone for a couple of weeks. I was more itchy. More red. Had a couple of zingers. My skin was generally more dry, flakey and sensitive. I also got a wee bit of ooze behind my left ear.


I had a few days around here when I started feeling really down and unsure of everything. 

Day 147

TOP day 150 - BOTTOM day 105
Hand comparison pics after using the repair lotion on my hands every day after my shower. They are definitely not this good every day but still a lot better than they were

5 Month anniversary on day 152.  I also managed my first full day out of the house without feeling absolutely 100% shattered afterwards. 

Day 157

Day 164

Day 165

Day 166 - Our engagement party! (with a bit of make-up!)

I managed to cope really well on the day of our engagement party. I'd had a pretty stressful week leading up to it as we moved house the weekend before so I was still trying to unpack boxes as well as cook and make a couple of decorations. I'm very glad that my part-time contract had finished the week before so I had plenty of spare time. 

Unfortunately I think the stress may have finally gotten to me and pushed me into another flare (luckily it was the week AFTER the party :) ). I had a super painful neck, sore, dry, zingers, itchy as heck. Was on the painkillers every day for about a week.

I didn't get any pics of this flare but these next pics are the tail end when its getting a bit calmer again.. note the super dry stretched skin from turning my neck?!

Day 178

Two day after this I had the most amazing skin day I've had this whole journey!! My face was literally perfect except for one red patch on my left cheek! I was absolutely amazed!! No swelling! When I did the pinch test my skin felt thin and normal (not inflamed and thick/swollen).... and then of course I had to totally go and ruin it by eating absolute CRAP.. I think for lunch I ate a whole bag of salt and vinegar chips all to myself and a whole lot of this sickly sweet chocolate slice thing that my mum made (I've got no self control when it comes to sweet stuff - so I usually don't have any in the house!) PLUS takeaways for dinner.... oh my heck.

So that brought on my next flare which thankfully has only lasted for the week... worst on my face but it also affected my hands neck and inner elbows, plus a split on my ear that had been healed up for a month or so also broke open again.

One thing I have noticed which I've found a bit strange is that I'm on the tail end of this flare up but the last 2 nights I've had night sweats again which I haven't had for about 3 weeks. Don't know whats going on there.

In between all these little flares I've also managed to cut back on my sleeping meds. I think I went about a week without taking any before the engagement party and then just the last three nights I haven't had any either. I think I'll take one tonight as my sleeping has been getting a bit crappier again. Last night I went to bed 9.30pm. Woke up at 11.30pm, 2.30am, 3.30am, 5.30am with the sweats, then back to sleep until 8am. I'm SO lucky that I'm able to sleep in a bit in the morning after nights like those.

Today - Day 186

So in 6 months I've managed to go from this .................................... to this. Yippee :) heres hoping the next 6 months are as positive.

Here are also a couple of my updated infographics......