So last December I was sporting a band-aid on my eyebrow. It was the season of parties and events, but I had to attend all of those with a band-aid on my face, and I had no choice. I didn't want to be a diva and cancel attendance because I had something, so I braved it and brought back Nelly circa 2003. Oh, you have no idea the many questions I got because of that band-aid: from patients, to friends, to family. Some people even messaged me on Viber and on Facebook Messenger to ask me about it, so after a while I came up with a perfect humorous answer: "May nangaway sa akin eh, but don't worry... mas malala itsura nya!" (Oh I got into a fight, but don't worry, his face is worse!).
Anyway, while I had the band-aid on, I realized it was as if I've put myself under a social experiment to survey what kind of reaction I'd generate from the appearance:
- Patients who have met me for the first time gave no reaction and that is really to be expected, I think. I'm sure they wondered why but since they do not know me well enough to ask a bold question, the only reaction I got was a weird look.
- Two patients, whom I just saw a few days before the band-aid happened were shocked that I was sporting a band-aid when they came back. One said: "Tinatago mo lang ata pimple mo eh!" (I think you're just hiding a pimple under there.) and the other said: "Siga doc ah, sino inaway mo?" (You're looking quite tough with that band-aid doc, who did you fight with?)
- A patient whom I haven't seen for quite some time took about an hour before she said anything. She sat on the chair, we finished with the procedure, and then just as she was standing up she goes: "Doc bakit ka ba kasi may band-aid?" (Doc why the hell do you have a band-aid?)
- Two friends who saw a picture I posted, messaged me privately, out of curiosity. Both very concerned, they couldn't help it so they inquired about what happened. Did I really look so bad that they had to worry? Do I really seem like someone who would be in a fight?
- At one party that I attended, I gave advance notice in an attempt to lower down people's reaction to the band-aid, but as soon as I entered everyone's greeting was still: "What happened to you?"
- My cousins and sisters branded me Nelly and gangsta. Singing "Andale andale mommi e.i. e.u uh-oh" because I reminded them of the famous rapper.
- And then a friend that whom just saw last week brought it up again: "I meant to ask you, why were you wearing a band-aid before?" A month has passed and she still was interested to find out the truth.
Anyway, the truth is that I picked a blister that I thought was a pimple and it got infected. Ewwww, right? The infection grew into serious proportions because I didn't realize until later that it wasn't a simple pimple that I was dealing with so I consulted my best friend and her derma cousin. I had to go under antibiotics for it, it was awful--and for a while I even thought I had "flesh eating bacteria" and I got so sad because I was looking at pictures on Google and saw people's face mangled by the disease.
Oh well, I'm okay now, so you do not have to worry. My face is back to normal and the band-aid has been off for awhile now. Actually, I when I opened for work on January 2nd, I was already band-aid free--but I still have a tiny baldspot on my eyebrow to remind me. I wore the band-aid to work and events for about two weeks and during that time I realized that no matter how hard you try to avoid it, it is human nature to pry. Even if you don't want it, you will be put under the spotlight and you will be asked questions, so you have to be prepared to answer.
Now, I could have chosen to hide inside for the entire two weeks to avoid all that but what if I had that skin thing for longer--will I really force myself to HIDE all that time? It's a funny thing... worrying about what people will think and say. For quite sometime it had been a great concern of mine (and I am not talking about the band-aid anymore) then a friend said: "Why do you care? Why should you care?" And he was right, you know? Who cares if I have a skin infection hidden under the band-aid? Let them speculate. Let them ask their questions. It's human nature, anyway. But I shouldn't any of those bother me.