Scorching, burning, branding and cauterizing- Oh my!

Update from my blog titled, “Almost Punk’d”.

Scorching, burning, branding and cauterizing – those are the words that describe the treatments that we (myself and BFF) chose to do on ourselves in order to gain our youth back and preserve our beauty. Sounds enticing right?!

Unless you are that cheerleader who can’t die or feel pain, a superhero with rapid healing power, or the run of the mill freak show that has a glutton for pain and punishment – this is not a casual walk in the park. Not saying we can’t handle pain, but dayummmmm GINA! A thorough heads up would have been nice, or even a sampling of the torture would have given us greater insight on the level of agony we’d be experiencing with said services.

Personally, I probably wouldn’t have gone through with purchasing all the treatments had I was able to “test” the pain associated with each service. Too  late now, contracts are signed, and now the saying of, “No pain…no gain” STRUGGLE IS REAL and has a totally different meaning now.

The painful services include:

  • Scorching – removing unwanted hair (vagina lazer & armpits)
  • Burning  – reversing skin damage/aging (broad band light or BBL)
  • Branding – slimming and smoothing skin surface (skin tightening)
  • Cauterizing – eliminating veins (vein lazer)

Scorching

As you read in my previous blog, the vag lazer is the standard suction and pinching sensations in which one device is set to scorching temps for the arm pits, while the other “chilled” device is used strictly for the vag area. The cooled lazer only slightly helps the ultra-sensitive area, but don’t get it twisted – it ALLLLLLLLL burns like a mother fucker!!! Not to mention the smell of burnt hair permeating throughout the room – forcefully hot boxing the stench into your nostrils for about 20 minutes! Ugh, I can still smell it as I type!

Burning

The BBL treatment uses a heated (burning), pulsed light that stimulates the targeted skin cells to generate new collagen. We call this face-zapping. Extremely thick gel (which I found out was ultra-sound gel) acts like a conductor and is applied to your face prior to the pulsed light treatment. Face-zapping takes about 20 minutes total.

A series of treatments are supposed to remove redness, skin damage and leave your skin looking 10 years younger! For serious. It’s ALSO supposed to be gentle, and non-invasive with minimal pain. Hmmm weird…SURPRISE this also boo-urns like a mother fucker and leaves my face and cheeks chipmunk swollen! My skin tends to stay red for the next few hours while my face feels like a thousand sunburns – ON FIRE! Super attractive. Not to mention, the stink of burnt popcorn fills the room like a cloud of smoke which envelopes and traps you until you are able to bolt once your face is done being zapped. Lucky for me, I only have a few more treatments left. Kill me now!

More burning/branding

Now I have not had the privilege to experience the “branding” treatment, but it was carefully explained to me as something similar to being prodded with a hot poker, like cattle. The same thick gel used above in the BBL treatment is also applied to all body parts that you wish to slim and smooth the surface on and then the “branding” tool is ironed over the area veerrrrrrrrrryyyyyy sloooooowly. Depending on the size of area you choose (example quads and hamstrings), this entire slow-branding process takes about an hour. For most people, this treatment is also non-invasive and relatively painless, but for the tiny percent with ultra-sensitive skin, well…that’s where the branding sensation comes in! Whoa!

Cauterizing

Not sure why clinics don’t disclose this within their sales tactics, but apparently when you receive treatment that minimizes protruding or spider veins on your body, you are really cauterizing (killing) them. O_O  EEEEEEK! This in turn eliminates the discoloration all together with an end result of a vein-less area.

As explained to me, vein treatments are also prepped with ultrasound gel and require a tool similar to my BBL laser which sends out a pulsed light that permanently zaps the veins away! Voila! OH no, no, no! Not off THAT easy. This lazer is also burning hot and the after affects can leave you with major bruising and swelling. So basically you are on bed-rest after receiving these treatments.

Lessons:

  • Set a budget and stick with it!
  • Ask sales person about honest pain level.
  • Test pain prior to procedures (if possible).
  • Remember you are beautiful and don’t need any procedures and get the hell outta there!
  • Think about it overnight.
  • Never go back.

Final thought for the day…”SHIT, beauty hurts, don’t do it!”

 

 

Knowing is Half the Battle – Finance 101

Do you ever feel as if you are constantly struggling with adulting? Learning lessons the hard way or completing your task(s) the painfully long way? Full-time struggle bus in effect? SAME! I am well into my 30’s and still finding out new (to me) processes for grown-up tasks that would have been nice to know at my very moody AF age of 17. Not sure if my emo self would have given two shits, but heck, it would have been worth a shot.

Adulting (v): to do grown up things and hold responsibilities such as, a 9-5 job, a mortgage/rent, a car payment, or anything else that makes one think of grown ups.

Used in a sentence: Jane is adulting quite well today as she is on time for work promptly at 8am and appears well groomed.  

If you don’t know what I am talking about, consider yourself lucky to have avoided this nonsense and be prepared for prime examples in adulting adversities – finance focused! Or, just skip this blog because you’ve had your shit together since day 1.

I have a list chock-full of fucked up decisions that can lead to long term problems. Of course I am listing these for a friend.  -_-

  • Bouncing checks and incurring overdraft fees that total more than what you have in all of your bank accounts.
  • Buried in student loans that are far greater than your salary.
  • Racking up credit card debt on multiple cards at 30%+ APR.
  • Fucking up your credit score with multiple late payments.
  • Buying a car from the first dealer you encounter and paying sticker price.

Here are my top “adulting” lessons in learning order. Most of you have already experienced all of these “lessons”- but I’m jotting these down for future reference when teaching my children about responsibilities. Here’s to hoping this information is still accurate when that happens. HA!

1. Budgeting

Take your debt (bills) – income = money for savings & entertainment. Easy right? Suuuuuuure, if you remember the balance in your account! Create a spreadsheet to organize and plan. #thatspreadsheetlife

2. Checkbook Balancing

Did you write a check? Subtract that from your balance because yes, that’s money coming out of your account at a later date. Enter that into your spreadsheet.  #spreadsheets4life

3. College Scholarships vs. Grants vs. School Loan Debt

  • Plan A: Try to get a scholarship for your entire college career. Fully funded education.
  • Plan B: Obtain as many grants as you can. Free money.
  • Plan C: Take out school loans (no one wants loans, but if there isn’t any other way, then do so. Mind the interest rate and pay your loans back on time. Otherwise, they will come after you and your firstborn child.

4. FICO/Credit Score

Similar but not the same. Both are used to evaluate credit risk. These scores will follow you and run your life 25/8 in all financial aspects. Want a loan to buy a car? Meet FICO/Credit Score. Want a loan to buy a house? It’s FICO/Credit Score again! In some cases, it may be checked in certain job scenarios. Only rule you need to remember:

  • Pay your credit card bills/loans on time. Every time.

5. Credit Cards

  • Open 2 max with a rating of “good” to “excellent” credit score.
  • Research the cards to find rewards and benefits best suited for your lifestyle along with a tolerable APR.
  • Use around 15%-20% to manage and maintain your credit score.
  • Always pay on time or pay off balances monthly.
  • Pay more than the minimum.

6. Car Loans

  • Study the best and worst times when to buy a car:
  • Research the car in question – especially the safety ratings and consumer reviews. Lifesaving decision here people.
  • Utilize a car pricing report to see what the average price is so you don’t get ripped off.
  • Read reviews on multiple car dealers to find the most reputable company to do business with. Some dealers are shady AS FUCK!
  • Locate car loan companies/banks that will provide the best APR. Why overpay? DERP!

Listen up superintendents of education in all the land of the U.S. of A. – add these important life lessons to the high-school curriculum so that future generations don’t fail!

Some of us weren’t privileged enough to have been handed down this information due to varying circumstances. Having your shit together is everything. Because who wants to pay for mistakes you made as a young adult, well into your 30’s? FML. #lessonslearned

kthanksbye

Urban Dictionary. Retrieved from http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Adulting

Tough Girls Cry

Last month my family received (for the second time) shocking news of a horrific accident involving an immediate family member. One is never prepared on how to feel, what to do and how to react. Most people publicly show sympathy, empathy and grieve outwardly. It is just as important to grieve as it is to mourn. With that being said, it is even more crucial to deal with these circumstances head on verses holding it all in until you explode with emotion at the most inopportune time.

If you are similar to me, my way of showing is a bit more complicated with a hint of detachment. My mind heads in the direction of compartmentalization when first processing this type of news in order to create a plan or strategy to “fix” while maintaining a strong facade.

My analytical psyche starts to think of all of the possible surrounding responsibilities, issues and functions that I can act on to repair or mitigate due to feeling helpless in the current situation. Taking charge and leadership over “processes” helps me to feel as if I am contributing, but in a detached manner. (This mindset became second nature to me ever since the age of 14 – when I left my home to relocate to a foster home. Having to grow up quickly in an outside setting coupled with facing difficult life decisions as a teen has contributed to my present coping skills.)

In regards to the accident, my mind took two weeks before I experienced an emotional breakdown which unfortunately happened while I was at work. Luckily, my office was empty and I was saved from embarrassment of having to publicly display my ugly cry face complete with hyperventilating. Suppression was a huge factor in my delay of emoting and it hit me all at once like a ton of bricks.

It was not pretty. It happened in the midst of a phone call where I completely broke down in uncontrollable sobbing for at least a minute straight. Thankfully the person on the other end was kind and reacted with compassion and concern. After I finally got my shit together, I was able to semi save face, call back and finish out my phone conversation.

My first mistake was choosing not to emote as I continued my daily routine – removed. My internal struggle was fear of having someone see me appear as “weak” when I am perceived as the strong one within my friend circles and family. Holding onto that perception with a tight grip skewed my view on myself to maintain a strong, stoic position when faced with extremely emotional situations affecting me or people close to me.

My second mistake was to hold all of my friends and family to enormously high expectations in the ability to mind read my needs and then become equally frustrated and angry when my needs weren’t being met. It was a double-edged sword type of situation – one couldn’t help if they tried and those that tried didn’t help. I was angry at the world mostly due to frustration at not being able to magically fix my family member or turn back time to prevent the accident from happening. #angerdisplacment

For that I am sorry. I am sorry for lashing out/pushing people away/blowing people off. I’ve felt like a crazy person for the past month, but have come to realize that I am neither a superhuman nor a fucking robot! Being strong can only go so far and we all have our tipping point and well…we all know what happens next. FREAK OUT!

A few helpful suggestions to try prior to losing your shit on the daily:

  • Talk to someone, soonish – in depth
  • Grieve/mourn – appropriately & honestly
  • Let out your emotions – freedom!

 

Live and learn and be kind to yourself. You are not alone in this process.

 

Check yo self before you wreck yo self

As I mentioned before in a few previous blogs, self-care is essential to the longevity of a healthy life. I am starting to realize this as time goes on and have noticed both physical and mental changes that have occurred over the years. This self-awareness has allowed me to be more in tune with what is going on inside and out which is imperative when counteracting ailments, physical pain, or negative energy.

Learning to identify personal needs and then addressing them with high priority is a constant struggle for me. The little things that were once minute and put on back burner have now come to surface and are haunting me. This includes mental and physical stressors from childhood, old injuries from rough sports, repetitive motion from daily movement and mental/physical disorders.

Not to say that I have extreme cases of each item listed, but they soon tend to all add up (and catch up)…eventually.

Mental Health

For me, this topic has always been swept under the rug as something to hide from others as well as myself ignore. With being a product of a dysfunctional family, many issues today have stemmed from the unaddressed experiences from childhood. The combination of culture and society had me feeling ashamed that I needed mental health therapy and therefore I hid this from my family, friends and professionals at that time.

Today, mental health awareness is more prevalent and there are many platforms to educate society on the different disorders that have long been kept quiet. This makes it feel more acceptable to seek out help when needed and to address issues without feeling ashamed or embarrassed that you aren’t “normal”.

Most companies offer benefits that include mental health as a part of the package and some even offer employee assistance programs at zero or low costs. This service can even extend to your family.

Some programs include topics such as:

  • Counseling and Relationship Support
  • Work life Balance Services
  • Legal Services
  • Financial Services

Please check with your benefits adviser on what your company can offer you. I urge you to take advantage of these free or low cost services may just save you anguish and stress and is a great starting point if you have no idea where to begin.

Physical Health

Unfortunately this area for me is constantly put on back burner. This can be anything from eating unhealthy, lack of sleep, alcohol intake, substantial physical activity, and aggressive sports. The combination of it all has taken its toll on my body and I have missed work and social activities due to constant pain.

Injuries – if you suffer from an injury, please, PLEASE address it immediately and follow through with any physical therapy necessary to repair the current injury and prevent future ones. I realize not all have access to endless means and doctor and physical therapy visits can be expensive, but I have learned that one cannot put a price on health.

Repetitive Motion – due to my job, my sitting position and constant repetition of movement relating to my upper half of my body, I am now experiencing back, shoulder and neck issues. From the menial tasks of typing, reviewing, and sitting – these everyday functions have led to constant pain and limited range of motion. Who knew?!

From both old injuries and repetitive movements, the pain was so excruciating that I finally ended up visiting a chiropractic doctor to assess my condition. The results were both good and bad – according to my X-rays, my neck and back are in Phase 1 of deterioration BUT easily fixable! I was then put on a chiro plan for the next 5 months –not cheap, but this was something I couldn’t ignore any longer. So I am biting the bullet now, but with the peace of mind that I will soon be healed. #iamworthit

Lessons Learned:

  • Avoiding mental health issues can lead to problematic relationships that are unhealthy
    • Meltdowns are not fun for you, your family or friends
    • Your work/career may suffer
  • A negative mental state can also lead and are tied to your physical health failing
    • Can block weight loss, cause prolonged illness and more susceptible to illness
  • Unaddressed disorders may cause permanent health concerns or even lead to death
    • Suicide awareness – pay attention to the signs
  • Ignoring injuries or health issues can lead to more serious long term problems
    • Who wants a hunchback at age 40? Not I!

I can’t stress enough to take the initiative to practice self-care – both mental and physical – for the betterment of your mind, body and soul.  This directly affects those surrounding you and in which they benefit from receiving the best of you!

<3

#notyourmom