Once back from Australia I started to itch again (arghhhhhhh!!!!!). Sure enough as the month went on scales began to reappear, and my hope of it disappearing forever was crushed. I returned to the clinic, embarked on several months of further treatment and it got better again. At this point I started to think about what else I could do to help myself. What did my body need? What was I doing to it and why did this bloody awful disease keep flaring up?!
I started to look at what I was eating and drinking. I did lots of research of my own on things that might help. I also spoke to my dermatologist, and she recommended that I have some allergy tests done, as what we consume can sometimes be linked to skin conditions and other ailments.
So, at the beginning of 2016 I thought (pardon the French), fuck it! I am going to change my life. I am fed up of being a scaly, self-conscious mess!
I started a diet recommended to me by my dermatologist, who is also a nutritionist. It was a huge change to what I would usually eat and I cut out a lot of food groups including dairy, wheat/gluten, and sugar. I saw a huge improvement in my skin within weeks. I also started to lose weight. I was feeling great and had a whole new mind set towards food and what my body needed to function healthily. However, as someone who also struggles with emotional eating (that is a whole new blog!) after a few months, it became a challenge.
For the moment I have now reverted back to conventional medicine as well as trying to maintain a healthier lifestyle and eating habits. My choice to do that wasn’t an easy one and I wrestle with it every day, but I have to do what works best for me at this moment in time. It doesn’t mean I have given up on natural remedies or that they don’t work. Everything has its place and I’m just trying to find a balance that is right for my mind and my body. I’m hopeful that I will get there really soon.
The past ten to eleven years have been like a rollercoaster. Managing the psoriasis has meant many ups and downs. I have learnt many things, most importantly, that our health is essential. Without our health we cannot do anything. We have to put that at the centre of everything we do and take care and love ourselves first. Trying to find a harmonious balance between what we need and what others need is very hard. You have to work at it all the time it's a lifelong commitment you make to yourself.
I will manage the condition as best I can by making the best choices for my body. I will never be free of it, the scars on my skin will remind me, but I will persevere. What I will continue to work on is the way I view myself because beauty is only skin deep. While my skin condition is a huge part of my life it does not define who I am, even though at times I let it. I have lots of great qualities and the strength of my character has got me through life so far.
We all are visual beings and make judgements of others very quickly. I hope after reading this that the next time you see someone with a missing limb, a facial deformity, disability or indeed a skin condition, that you will take a moment and not stare in disgust or disbelief. I hope that you will empathise and treat them as you would any other person. I spent so much time hiding and not talking about it, mourning the loss of the old
me, but part of acceptance is embracing who I am right now. Loving myself despite my flaws, and most importantly, to keep living and be seen.
If you are suffering from illnesses, including psoriasis, the below links may be a source of help and support. These are some of the resources I used and still continue to use today.