Gratituesday Product Review

I am WHITE.  I am so white I am almost blue.  Kinda like a cloud.  Being this way made me a perfect candidate for thousands of nightmare scenarios in school: Gym class, Flag Girl Uniform, class trips to the water park, any park, Spring, Summer.  Back then I there was  no Nicole Kidman to point to.  Everyone was tan. Oh, and it was California.  The girls I had to stand next to were usually short, beautiful, glossy black-haired Latinas with skin the color of the finest cocoa. Gorgeous.  I never had a chance.  I remember my first day of kindergarten.  Dressed so cute, long blond hair, I was ready to conquer the world. Then I heard the words “You are the UGLIEST white girl I have EVER seen!”  I found the nearest tunnel and hid until senior year.

In junior high, I wore sweats to P.E. as long as I could.  Inevitably, there would come a day when the shorts had to go on.  I would walk out to gasps. (Over-exaggeration.) My classmate Tana Moz walked directly up to me and touched my leg. She pulled back her finger as if it had been burned.   “I didn’t believe you were that white. I thought you were wearing pantyhose!”  She shook her head and went back to her friends.  I stayed to the back of the class.

So went the years.  Embarrassed for being so white. (Why is white so terrible??)  Sure I could slather on my mom’s QT, but that raised more questions, so I left it alone.  Oompa loompa orange has never been “in”.  Then, things began to change.  Skin cancer rates went up.  Fake tan products got better.  I became one with tanning creams, my skills of application unmatched.  Me, bronze beauty, whenever I wanted.  Bliss.

Today I am going to tell you about a tanning product I used for Easter and how it altered my plans. A bit.

I saw a morning news show that recommended products for getting the at home airbrush tan.  I was salivating.  The one I purchased was L’Oreal Sublime Bronze.  I chose it because the gal went on, and on and on about how flawless the spray went on and there was no rubbing in.  Just Spray…and walk away.  Okay!

Sublime?

Like I said, I am a pro at applying self tanner.  I am pretty good with a can of spray paint.  I love the look of the airbrush tan.  This should have been the perfect storm of bronzy-ness.  Nope.  My upper body turned out quite nice, only a few places were a little bit darker than the rest.  My legs were another story.  When I got up Easter morning to examine my handiwork I knew I was going to have to wear pants.  Most of the mist landed on the tops of my feet.  Specifically my toes.  Oh, a LOT got on the floor so the bottom of my feet were like a bronze statue.  I sprayed it evenly, but it didn’t turn out even.  It looked like I had been stuck on a lop sided rotisserie.  Well done in some parts, still raw in others.  I so wasn’t fancy.  At all.

I don’t know if I’ll spend another nine bucks to try this again.  At least I know my limits with the lotion.  It’s a bummer because I really liked the application process, and the color,  just not thrilled with the coverage.  Regardless, I am sooooo very thankful that the options are out there.  Apparently my white legs cause a lot of stress for people.

Medical Monday: A Partial Pathetic admission on Yaz

I’m not a fan of synthetic hormones. That should be no secret by now.  Not because I am Catholic (I’m not), and not because I think they are mean, not because I kissed a boy behind a magazine.  Just was never a fan.  I had the Depo shot once after Jacob.  I felt three months pregnant for a year.  A scattering of times after that, I would try the Pill, and find that I did not enjoy it, and would quit.  After Jon and I started to try to have kids, we soon found out that I didn’t need it anyway.  Getting pregnant was TOUGH.

As I began my journey into the pharmacy, I learned a lot about hormone replacement therapy and the like.  I began to dread my future.  Taking a pill that consisted of a pregnant mare’s urine did not appeal to me in the slightest. Women are pumped full of hormones from their first zit to the last chin hair.  It’s nuts.  I am not about doing away with the pill, I think if used properly, it is an acceptable option in the family planning arsenal.  (Would much rather dispense pills than increase abortions, TYVM.) But the fact that women accept them part and parcel as a rite of passage into womanhood, is kinda frightening. Not to mention all the junk ending up in our water supply! (Moobs galore!)

Almost one year ago, I was given one month’s sample and a prescription for Yaz.  I was having some spotting after exercising vigorously.  (Running and anything involving Jillian Michaels.) So my doc touted these new pills as the greatest thing ever.  I wouldn’t gain weight, I would feel great.  Hell, I might even want to stay on them past the three-month trial run.

I took them for a week and a half.  Then I almost died.  After not dying I spent months feeling like I was going to die. After that, I spent months afraid symptoms would return.  In the end, my doctor said I was anxious, the ER got tired of seeing me, and I was left with wonky heartbeats and sheer terror. I had so many x-rays and CT scans I should be glowing.

Turns out I was not alone, I found website after website where women experienced what I had and were told it was nothing.  Anxiety.  Agoraphobia. Paranoia. Only a few had a nurse or doctor who admitted there was a problem with the birth control pills containing drospirenone. Some never got an answer because they dropped dead. Many found their gall bladders destroyed. Most had clots that had rapidly formed in the legs and rocketed into the lungs. Hundreds of women on each site, all with stories identical or worse than mine.

Imagine the surge of optimism when I saw this headline on CNN.com. “Blood Clot Risk Higher in Newer Birth Control Pills, Study Finds”.  Yeah, then I read it.

‘Bayer, the maker of Yaz, challenged the study’s methodology and the databases used,  saying that they “provide less reliable conclusions than are available from existing scientific evidence.’ ”

Of course.

“According to Bloomberg News,  6,850 lawsuits  were pending in the U.S. as of February 1 over alleged injuries and deaths as a result of the use of Yasmin, Yaz, or generic versions of the drugs.”

To Bayer, all those women are lunatics and liars I guess. The stuff is not safe.  It should be pulled from the market.  I am just so very thankful that my family did not have to sue on behalf of me because I left this world too early.  I will write a post one day that fully explains what happened to me.  Because the findings on all of my tests were inconclusive I was not able to sue.