Updated: Jul 11, 2022
“I call that the mic drop,” I explained after flopping down sideways on the bed like a seal.
He gave me the side-eye and a small laugh, the kind that’s mostly air. I laughed, too. I could do that now, after almost a week of my ass being covered in burns.
I was five days in on waking up stuck to the sheets, attempting to tenderly peel them off the oozing wounds that had adhered themselves to the fabric. I appreciated my body’s expediency — to shield the ever-so-sensitive skin with a thick crust in a matter of mere hours. If only I could keep my buns in open air 24/7, to let the healing take its course without interfering. I’d try to gently separate sheet and skin around the crater of each burn, but it quickly became apparent that there was no other way to go than the fast rip.
Just get it over with, I’d brace myself, then wince in sharp, shitty agony as the crust tore from the flesh, leaving a fresh, oozing circle underneath.
I was fucking pissed at myself for leaving the light wand on too long, but also a little happy, because it worked better that way.
I’d been using the wand as relief when psoriasis spots cropped up — I’d had it for so long now it would short out here’n’there, a thick, lightning crack trailing down the bottom of the base. It was what I went to when I hadn’t been diligent with diet to the point I believed I needed to be in order to have clear skin. Now its visible signs of wear reminded me I couldn’t rely on it forever. It’s wasn’t a solution. Or true healing. A bandage, at best. I refused drugs, steroids and the poison big pharma toted as solutions but only polluted the body further, feeding the bugs that generated the dermatoxin that created the psoriasis rashes in the first place.
The choice to pass on conventional symptom-masking left me with the option: Lifestyle.
Spiritual seeking. Mentality shifting. Health consciousness. Detox-drive. Soul nurture. Lifestyle.
10 years ago, I healed through diet, and did it again, and again.
But that damn in-between, tho, was still sticky. This condition had become a matter of maintaining, not eradicating.
I knew people who had healed with Chinese herbs, homeopathics, diet change, energy work. I knew a woman who had it bad and went to the tanning bed, got burned to shit, followed by a spray tan, and somehow, it completely went away. She was drunk every hour of the day and ate garbage. But she healed.
And here I was. The fucking holistic health hippy lifestyle advocate, still burning my ass with a wand, hoping to singe off spots that came back time after time. Unable to fully commit to the eating regimen that promoted healing, feeling like my progress was simply never enough.
I wanted a healing story that was so much tidier.
Where moderation was a possibility, or deep detox had taken hold, my body wasn’t so seemingly sensitive to every little thing it was exposed or I subjected it to.
I hobbled around all week, wincing when I got up, ungluing my pants from the burns, and when scabs finally took hold, they ached like mad whenever I moved — the hard, circular skin shield was set, I’d bend, it’d whine. Soft skin and hard skin not able to make amends. It had become apparent that I didn’t know what my healing equation would be. That sustainable, nourishing, joyful lifestyle, plump with challenges and triumphs both — but one I could navigate, and tweak, and heal, just as I am. I guess, I was still working on it.
I’d known psoriasis for 15 years, we were the best of friends and worst of enemies. I once named her Penelope. She introduced me to self-care. Nutrition. A different way of living. I loved her. She also helped me hide, and avoid and put off my fears of being seen, having success, living a fully realized life.
Would I always need her?
What was she to me now?
I didn’t want to resent the ass burns. Or be mad at myself for wanting rid of an eyesore of a thing that blanketed my life in ways beyond what anyone who knew me could ever understand. I wanted to make peace with my skin, flop on the bed like a seal, laugh anyway, even though it hurt.
The lesson sucked. And it was beautiful. Actually, that was reaching. After all this time, I still didn’t know how I felt about it. Some days, it wasn’t extreme to use the word hate.
Appreciation. SelfLove. Stuckness — those were there, too. A mixed bag, for sure.
This isn’t the end of the story. The rest is YTBD, yet to be determined.