Monday, June 25, 2012

My First Gynae Visit

Or should I rename the title to be "The search for my Perfect Gynae?"

Beginning of this year, I decided to book for a gynae visit. *at last!*
I know one can get a yearly checkup with a normal GP, but I thought I should start to find a gynae that both me and Ian are comfortable with, so we can use the same gynae when we decide to have a baby in future. *avid planner*
So I started googling around and speaking to friends who have had babies.

I finally drew up The requirements of my version of a 'Perfect Gynae' :
  1. Obviously must be very competent , and good in handling emergencies, just in case *touch wood*
  2. Not racist, as racism is still sadly, very much in the real world.
  3. Must practise at nearby hospitals (Panorama Mediclinic Hospital or Louise-Leipoldt Mediclinic Hospital). Both hospitals has good technology and infrastructure. I don't want to be in the position of almost-dying and they could not find / I have to wait my turn for the CPR machine to resuscitate me.
  4. Patience. I'm the patient but he/she must be patient with me. Lol. Having time and willing to listen / answer whatever doubts I might have.
  5. Must be willing to go natural birth. But of course if there is a genuine medical reason, she will still do a caesarean on me of course. Because I heard that in SA, a lot of gynaes will 'push' you to opt for a caesarean so that it is scheduled for money-making purposes.

After scouring every single possibility, I decided to make an appointment with Dr. Marie Pienaar. She was highly recommended by both a friend as well as my neighbour (they do not know each other, just happened to speak about their gynae and they both spoke very highly of her, that must surely mean something?)

My friend had an emergency pre-mature labour, and told me how calm and quick she was at the hospital ready for her. However, both of them gave the advice, get yourself in the Doctor's patients' list, as there will be a very long queue to get into the client list. Once I am in, then I can easily get an appointment should I have any issues or pregnant in future. I called up (that was in January, and the first appointment I could get for my first visit was in June!)

I thought to myself "Well, we are not going to have a baby any time now, might as well wait".

So finally, my appointment was just two weeks ago on the 11th of June.
I must say, I am very happy with her, and she ticks off all the requirements (lack of better word) for my Perfect Gynae.
Ian accompanied me to my first appointment as I also needws him to be comfortable with her, seeing that I am looking for a 'lifetime' gynae.

The appointment was late, we only went in at 3:30pm although the appointment was for 3pm. I was a bit nervous as I never had a gynae checkup before and most of the people said it will be a bit uncomfortable.
My first impression was the friendliness from the doctor right from the start, accompanied with a genuine smile :)
She took her time talking to us, chatting about family history, asking if I had any questions etc.
To be honest, at times I was thinking this at the back of my mind, 'Are you sure my appointment is that long?'.

Finally it was time for me to lie down and she did the checkup, she also took time to show me the monitor and pointed to me my ovaries, eggs, etc. Ian seemed to understand what he was seeing, but unfortunately it was just blur patches of black and white and made no real sense to me...

She also did a pap smear. I liked the way she explained to me what she would be doing before she started, so I knew exactly what to expect. Surprisingly, it was not painful nor uncomfortable at all.

Then I was sent to the pathology lab in the same building to get some blood checks for rubella antibodies (if not, will need a jab).

All in all, I am glad I waited to get in this gynae's patient list. I am sure I will be in good hands when we plan to have a baby.

And no, we are not trying for a baby yet!

Cost for Gynaecologist
Consultation  R650 *Pretty steep, but this is what they charge for your first consultation (Medical aid covers R 285.90)
Ultrasound Pelvic R450 (Medical aid covers R 442.80)

Cost for Pathologist
Rubella antibody test  R129.90 (Medical aid covers R129.90)
Pap smear R124.30 (Medical aid covers R124.30 )

P/s - Please, if you eventually end up with Dr. Marie Pienaar, please let me know what you think of her :-)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

My New Dermalogica Facial Routine

At last, at the age of 27, I have managed to have a consistent facial routine, with the same facial product.

Since October last year, I have been faithfully using Dermalogica products.
The results are really good - less breakout, and more hydrated skin.
I am glad that my beautician convinced me to try Dermalogica again, as I never had good results with them.

I remembered when I was in my teenage years, Mum bought us Dermalogica to hopefully zap out all the hormone pimples. It never really help, purely because I wasn't consistent, and I think most of the products are aimed at oily / problematic skin.

Then 4 years ago, I bought a travel pack of Dermalogica Medibac. Big mistake.
I wasn't properly consulted on how to use them, so it was way too strong for my skin (At that time I thought strongest = best). Due to my sensitive skin, I broke out more and was itchy all over. I never continue using it.

This time, Dermalogica helped me maintain my skin and keep my pimples at bay.
So I thought I should share my facial routine products.

1. Dermalogica Precleanse Review

This is my  favourite product of Dermalogica. It smells divine.
I pour a drop on dry palm, massage over dry face. I focus more on my problem areas, mainly my T-zone. I leave it about 15 seconds, then I wet my hands are massage my face. You will see that the transparent liquid on my face becomes whitish in colour. Then rinse.
This is a must-have product for me. I can stop using everything else but this. 
I've used this since October 2011, and is still using the same bottle. There is probably 35-40% in the bottle still. And I use it at least twice a day!

2. Dermalogica Special Cleansing Gel Review

I got this when there was a promotion. Before that I never use a cleanser after my pre-cleanse.This product is good, so good that hubby actually use it for shaving and to clean his face! 
However this product I only need very little to wash my entire face. And I mean very little. Can't even make a full pump. Only 20% of one full pump is more than enough. I think this bottle will last me at least 2 to 3 years - hopefully before it expires?

3. Dermalogica Active Moist Review

My face has always been categorised as oily skin and I piled on harsh products to strip oil out of my skin, until finally I realised I actually have dehydrated skin. Active moist is perfect for people with dehydrated skin like me. It makes my skin feels more supple - taps finger on skin and it really feels as if it bounced :-) *call me crazy* I put it on twice a day - day and night. I got this around November 2011, and now 6 months later, left with 20% of it.

4. Dermalogica Skin Hydrating Booster Review

This tiny bottle is my favourite product. It does the same as Active Moist, just that it is VERY hydrating, thus called a booster. I first got a sample bottle when I bought my Active Moist and was very very happy with the result I get. I took very long to eventually buy myself a full bottle, as it was quite pricey , around ZAR 600 for such a small bottle (It is only 30ml). Eventually I got it because I saw the difference once my trial bottle is out. But like all other Dermalogica products, it takes very long to finish a whole bottle. I only use 4 drops for each application, and it is more than enough for my entire face. And I'm not even being stingy because I believe that if I use anything , I should use enough because if not rather not put anything at all. 

Overall, I am glad I got back on Dermalogica again after the bad mishap on the Medibac range. I definitely see a big improvement on my skin. They are more expensive, but definitely lasts longer. If I were to choose my must-haves, it would definitely be the Pre-cleanse with Active Moist , OR Pre-cleanse with Hydrating Booster.

Chronological order of must-haves
1. Pre-Cleanse
2. Skin Hydrating Booster
3. Active Moist
4. Special Cleansing Gel  

I can very proudly say that since then, I now no longer buy other unnecessary brands in pharmacies, and dedicated to using my Dermalogica range faithfully. I am eager to try out their new multivitamin range the soonest chance I get. I promise I'll share a review on that too :-)

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Are you happy with your job?

Are you happy with your job?

I get this question quite frequently. I am sure everyone does.
Very early in my career, I know and believe that if you make your passion your job, your life would be very fulfilling. The most powerful combination of all is of course if your passion AND strength becomes your job.

True, but what if, like me, am not sure what my passion is?

My education / career life has been somehow a predictable journey.

Just because I have good results in PMR, I automatically find myself in Science stream. (instead of Arts - because Teacher said Art Stream is where all the weaker students are).
In Science stream, I have the choice of choosing Biology or Physics.
I chose Physics because I could not get myself to disect a frog.

Even after graduating, I did not have a clear understanding on what options I have for my future.
All I knew was I could choose to be either a doctor or a teacher or an architect or a programmer or an accountant.
What I did not realise is that I could choose to be a Neurosurgeon, ENT surgeon, Ophthalmologist, Gynaecologist, Orthpaedic surgeon. I just thought of doctor - GP.
I did not know I could choose to become an Actuary Accountant or Chartered Accountant.
I did not know I could choose to become a Business Analyst, Business Intelligence Specialist, Database Administrator instead of only Programmer.

So when the time came to pick a degree to study, I never knew what my passion was.
I thought, "Hey, maybe I could start with what my strength and weaknesses are."

So yes, I have always been strong in mathematics, logical subjects, formulas, reasoning. - my left side of brain.
But then, I also always have a good eye on colours, layout, art, emotions - my right side of brain.
And that was how I ended up studying Multimedia.
Get it? Information technology that has logical reasoning and mathematical subjects, together with presentation and view of digital art. Easy peasy.

Somehow after I finished my 3-year Bachelors Degree in IT, majoring in Multimedia, I wasn't happy. I wasn't fulfilled.
I did not like to be given less points for a black and white art, just because the teacher likes the combination of purple and yellow with pink polka dots.
I did not like it if the layout turns out beautiful, but in the backend the logic is not clean or well thought of.
Maybe there is no ideal, and for me to want it to both ways was irritating no one else but myself.
After I graduated, I decided from the beginning I want a more logical, reasoning, stable job.
I soon finds myself applying for the role that involves programming.

I soon ended up as an IT Analyst and then to Management Trainee and now as a Software Developer All in IT field, because that was what I got for my degree - although I did not know how I ended up here!

Anyway after the long story, back to the main question. Am I happy with my job? What is my passion?
That will be in another post. Just because I can.