In the end, I was refered to my laser dermatologist by a cosmetic surgeon, and had a very positive experience.
I had 3 very deep ice-pick scars that were excised during an in-office procedure and allowed to heal, first.
A few weeks later, I had full-face, CO2 laser remodelling.
I was given prescriptions for antivirals (I think?) to take right before the procedure. The day of the procedure, my face was numbed with numbing cream, and injections in more sensitive areas, and I was given medications for pain, an anti-viral (i believe) and a valium.
A nurse was present, in addition to the doctor and her assistant. They monitored my vitals and the doctor covered my eyes with special contact lenses. I did not feel any pain or discomfort during the actual procedure! I did feel "out of it," from the valium, and the skin felt very hot and looked very swollen immediately after the procedure.
I went home and slept for a very long time afterward. I kept my head elevated on pillows, and the recovery balm on my face. The next day, i had minor peeling, and washed and used the recovery balm several times. By the next day, my skin had finished the minor peeling, and was just a bit red. There was never any pain, just some swelling especially around my eyes.
I went for my follow-up appointment on Monday, and was actually sort of upset that my face healed so well- i was expecting much worse damage to the skin surface! As time went on, the collagen remodeling has been amazing! I am very pleased with the results and only wish I had done it sooner!