Apologies for doing zero design blogging. Four day long weekend for Easter and I spent most of it at home battling my skin. My elbow eczema and my shoulder eczema is slowly joining up in the middle. Fucks sake.
It’s so tempting to think I could just ask mum to write me a prescription for some cortisone and I could be rid of this in days, but I just can’t stand being reliant on them anymore. I’ve been googling the word eczema and every possible treatment I’ve ever heard of. Trawling through blogs of other people going through topical steroid withdrawal for tips. I’ve been relying on steroids on and off to have “normal” skin my whole life.. that’s twenty three years worth of damage. Who knows how long it’ll take for my skin to get back to normal.
My neck is slowly getting better, but my legs are so bad I’m not even willing to put a photo up. I’ve been wearing cotton gloves to sleep but I can still scratch myself to a bloody pulp with them on. I read a blog where a woman wore boxing gloves to sleep.. maybe it’s worth a try. I’m pretty fucking desperate right now.
I know I don’t have it that bad. My hands are normal after three years of swollen flaking sausages for fingers. At least my eczema is in patches and not all over my body. At least my face is spared, just minor flaking and scarring on my eyelids. I scroll through the eczema tag on here and see everyone’s photos and I just want to hug you all because I know how painful it is to just have a shower, I know what it feels like to wake up in the middle of the night just wanting to rip your skin off. I know what it’s like not wanting to leave the house because you look hideous and you leave a trail of fucking flaking skin everywhere.
I guess I’m trying to talk myself into not giving up on this steroid withdrawal phase. I hope there will be a day I have beautiful smooth skin but without the steroids.
The weather in Sydney is flirting with all the seasons. The last few days have been rainy and cold, I even had to drag out a hoodie today. Summer in Sydney is usually short shorts and half a shirt when I’m home.
Which of course means my skin hasn’t been able to figure out what the fuck is going on and my eyelid eczema is in full swing, peeling, dry and painful. After a shower, I stand in front of the mirror with a tiny dab of 1% hydracortisone on my fingertips, gathering the courage to smear it around my eyes. The burn hits me unprepared every time, as my eyes water with the pain and I stand with both hands clenched on the vanity waiting for it to subside.
Every time I swear I’m done with the steroids, I end up coming back to them. There’s just no relief without turning to them. Nothing that works as fast or as reliably. I’ll be paying for it soon though. Just like where I repeated used steroids on the eczema on my hands, the skin became thickened and rough. It takes months to smooth out, go back to normal. Then I have a single flare up and within a day my fingers are swollen, painful to bend, making zips, buttons and driving a chore.
I’m sure I could be putting in a better effort to maintain my skin.. I could eat right, exercise, change my sheets more often, clean more often. To be honest, I get what I ask for by not looking after my environment.
My hands are dry, peeling and raw. Three of my fingers on my right hand are swollen and painful to bend. Two of my cuticles are gone, so dry that they peeled off. I’m holding an ice pack to them to numb away the itch and the pain, but as soon as I remove them, it’s back. Anytime I wash my hands, I have to drown them in an oily moisturiser to stop the tight, dry feeling.
I’ve tried every topical treatment I can find. Basic stuff like Vaseline, QV, Avene, Cetaphil, Aveeno. Oatmeal based products like Dermaveen and Dermadrate. I’ve tried pure jojoba oil, emu oil and macadamia oil. I have cortisone, hydracortisone and other steroids from my doctor, that are harmful to use long term, thinning the skin and causing dependance.
I’m allergic to dust mites, but theres no way to avoid them. I can’t pat my dog because it makes me flare up. I make it up to him by giving him tummy rubs with my foot.
There are good days, but today is definitely a bad day. Fuck you eczema.