After nearly 4 years since my diagnosis, I have finally come to terms with my psoriasis. The brutal skin disease made me extremely insecure about my body and appearance.
There were a lot of things I had to do to get to this point. I joined Facebook groups and talked about it to my friends, my family, and even strangers who would ask about the “marks.”
For months at a time, I would wear long sleeves and sweatpants to hide everything going on underneath my clothes. But then I realized something. Many people are going through skin adversity. A month ago, I went to the beach with some friends and discovered that they also had marks on their bodies, but they didn’t let it affect them, nor did they refuse to take off their shirts just because of some marks.
In the first few months, I would look in the mirror and nearly cry because I didn’t know how long this would last or why it happened to me.
In the first few years, I was doing light box therapy, covering up my body, and keeping it very low-key. Only people closest to me knew about my psoriasis.
After 2 years, I gained more confidence and courage -- thanks to my girlfriend Samantha -- to own it, not try to hide it, and accept it for what it is.
Ever since I became more open with friends and family, they have been nothing but supportive and accepting of my condition. The most common conversation we have is simple:
“What are those marks?”
“That’s my psoriasis, I’ve been dealing with it for a few years now.”
Some people follow up and wonder if I’ve gotten checked or applied certain creams – which I do. It shows that they care and just want the best for me.
I don’t feel like I have to hide anymore. I don’t feel like an oddity anymore. People don’t tend to care about your appearance. They’re more concerned with themselves.
As long as you’re a good person and you don’t project your emotions of what you’re going through on others, then you will have nothing but love and support the more you open up and own your situation.
When it comes to a condition as visible as psoriasis, the journey of acceptance can take a long time. Coming from someone who had clear skin all the way until 19, time is the biggest factor to overcoming the mental aspect of the disease.
Photo Credit: PonyWang / E+ via Getty Images
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