Skin Deep

1480 Words6 Pages
Skin Deep We drove all the way down to New Jersey. We usually reserve NY/NJ trips for Korean grocery shopping and long weekends. It was a perfectly nice March day out—brisk, but sunny, with just enough warmth for a light jacket. This was my dad’s idea. I was pretty against the whole thing, but I decided to give it a try; it wouldn’t hurt to try, would it? Ever since I was young I have had scars on my face from a severe case of chicken pox. The doctors worried that my face would be scarred much worse than it is. They gave my parents two options—sand my skin down to create smooth skin which could potentially cause worse scars and redness in cold temperatures, or do nothing and hope that the scars would disappear over time. My parents, hoping for the best, went with the latter choice. And some 18 years later, my father questioned this decision. Dr. Grace Kim got her bachelor of science in biology from MIT in 1995. My father found her office advertisement in the Korean community newspaper. She shared her office in Inglewood, NJ with two other doctors whose degrees from prestigious universities hung like graffiti on the walls. The office was softly lit and had a sort of Zen themed feel to it with bamboo shoots, rocks, stone tables, all classily done. The magazines spread across the rock table tops were plastered with skinny young Korean girls with perfect chins and tiny frames. I could sound out the words on the cover: “ooh-manz sen-suh” or “Women’s Sense.” The door opened and my name was called. My scars never really bothered me. I can remember the few instances when someone had noticed them and asked about them. But having someone specifically appointed to sit, stare, examine, and evaluate what “your biggest problem areas are” is not the highest rung on the self-esteem ladder. There are some days I don’t even notice my scars; then again, there are days they seem to pop off my face eclipsing my otherwise clear complexion. Dr. Kim’s remedy for my scars was to cut the “more noticeable ones” using a very precise eyelet cut, stitch, then after healed, use laser technology to smooth the scarring from the stitches. Each eyelet cut would cost $200 and “with my condition” could cost over $2000. But before any services could be rendered, her exclusive line of skin emulsifying products must be used 6 weeks prior to surgery.
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