The Tiny Respite and the Voice of God

Skin update: I’m past the 6 week mark now.  I haven’t had any huge radical changes (good or bad) but I’ve had a couple positive ones that added up, so I feel like I got a bit of a tiny respite!

  • I’m sleeping better at night again!  Maybe this wasn’t even TSW related but more of a stress thing, but I no longer lie there in the dark for 2-3 hours trying in vain to sleep.  I can fall asleep pretty quickly and I STAY asleep.  This is a big relief.
  • My skin is trying little by little to make oil again.  I actually almost cheered for joy when I found two small pimples.
  • The swollen lymph node in my armpit went away.
  • My face is slowly getting softer and less dry.  I used to get all dried out by the afternoon and could barely smile or laugh because it was really uncomfortable.  This week I could smile and laugh freely most of the time and boy did it feel good to actually have a genuine smile.
  • I also seem to be a little less red in the face.  I may credit starting to take Turmeric capsules for that one – Heather from Eczemancipated told me it helps with the redness.  Thanks Heather – I think you were right! 🙂
  • Overall I am less itchy.  Sure, I still get the 2 pm, 5 pm, and 8 am itchy fits (does anyone else have a specific time of day when they get really itchy?) but some days I’m able to leave things alone for the most part rather than always itching every day.  For example last week I was really ripping at my neck every night – this week I was able to leave it alone for a couple different nights.  Don’t get me wrong… I still itch very much so, but the intensity and frequency is slightly down.

Other observations from the past few days:

  • I get these “shivering fits” sometimes where I just shiver and shake and am really cold, even if there is no REASON for me to be cold, like if I’m inside at home or work.  Or I’ll feel hot and cold simultaneously, I might have mentioned that before.  I’ve read about this on the ITSAN forum so I’m not real concerned.  Actually the more I read, the more I’m sort of relieved because all signs seem to point to me having TSW and it’s nice to finally put a name to everything and know I can be healed eventually.
  • My hands and wrists are slowly getting more rashy and red.  They look pretty chewed.  I tried to take a picture of them but it didn’t do the red justice.  I am wondering if this means I will get the “red sleeve” sign of TSW.  Since it’s spreading upward, blotchy and red, to the backs of my hands, I went out to Target and got some more tops with extra-long sleeves so I can cover them up at work.  (They’re cardigans which have the effect of making me feel like a frumpy librarian.  Nothing against cardigans as they can be sexy or cute, and the one I got was REALLY SOFT.  But when all this TSW is over with, I’m vowing to wear short sleeves almost every day even in the dead of winter and APPRECIATE having soft, smooth skin).  Normally I wouldn’t really care about my hands looking so terrible, but I work a desk job and talk to people or have to show them things on the computer and I don’t feel like having them notice my hands while I’m typing or whatever.

And now a few pictures:

Crease of my elbow.  Really it's redder than the picture shows.  It hurts like all heck, like a sunburn.  I definitely used steroid here, but thankfully it seems pretty localized, as my forearms are mostly okay.

Crease of my elbow. Really it’s redder than the picture shows. It hurts like all heck, like a sunburn. I definitely used steroid here, but thankfully it seems pretty localized, as my forearms are mostly okay.


Stomach and hipbone rash.

Stomach and hipbone rash.  Not getting any better.  Then again, it’s not spreading, and I’m only at the 6 week mark.


And Now…..I am going to say something in this post that is going to make me sound like a wack job.

Let me preface this by saying, now that I have accumulated many wonderful blog friends and readers, I understand that some of you are Christian, some of you are atheist, and some are somewhere in between, or have different beliefs entirely – you may ascribe to Hinduism, Judaism, or the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.  This is all fine and good, I’m not going to judge you if your beliefs happen to differ.  However, I know our society can get a little squeamish talking about anything with a religious bent.  I’m Christian, I do believe in God, and I’m not ashamed of it.  If I didn’t believe in God and have comfort and faith to get me through things like TSW and this divorce, I’d be far worse off!

That being said, on Sunday, God communicated with me.  Not once, but twice!

It wasn’t like a giant hand reached down from the clouds, tapped me on the shoulder and said, “Hey you.  You there, with the red skin.  Pay attention.  I got something to say.”

The first one was such an uncanny coincidence that I can’t help but ascribe it to a higher power – in my case, God.  I was in the car with my parents, inwardly steaming and fuming about my husband and the divorce thing.  I cycle through moods of sadness, peace, anger, nostalgia, and pretty much anything else under the sun.  At this particular point I was very angry.  I kept thinking, “I want to hate him, but it’s wrong to hate him.  I want to hate him so much, but it won’t be productive.”  Basically I was mentally wrestling with the concept of HATE, turning it over and over in my head.  At that moment I looked up, I was passing a church whose marquee sign said, “IF YOU HATE, YOU CANNOT HAVE PEACE.”  Of course!  Hate is the wrong emotion to have here.  It’s very destructive and will only eat away at my self-preservation and prevent me from letting go and moving on.  These were wise words put in my path for a reason.

The second incidence happened later that night.  I was in the bathroom getting ready for bed, moisturizing my red and dry skin and just sort of mentally griping, why do I have to go through this now, why me, I look ugly, why must I be all red, is there a point to this, etc.  At that point, a voice in my head uttered a phrase.  This all sounds very strange, but it wasn’t a conscious thought – it was PUT there, as plainly as someone was speaking to me, though it wasn’t an audible voice.  Even writing this now, I feel sort of silly telling about it, as I tend to be quite logical and rational, but I can’t deny that this was a very unusual thing.  The voice said matter-of-factly, “You wanted to do great things.”

I immediately knew what this meant.  I was being put through all these trials at the current time so that I could emerge strong and vibrant and victorious and indeed, DO great things.  What those things are, I don’t know, but it was immensely comforting to be reminded that God has something in store for me and that these trials are happening for a purpose.

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15 thoughts on “The Tiny Respite and the Voice of God

  1. I was wondering how you were doing! Glad to see you post and yay for wise words and moving forward.

  2. Amanda says:

    Glad you have even tiny improvements! And while I don’t ascribe to any particular religious beliefs, I think it’s fantastic that you have your faith to fall back on during difficult times. You will emerge from all of this much stronger!

  3. Yes, load up on long sleeve cotton shirts. I have a special TSW wardrobe.. mostly light colored/skin colored clothes. I have about 1-2 weeks of clothes. All my nice stuff from before TSW is underneath the bed until I get better!

    The itching at certain times is normal. It has to do with the adrenal glands and cortisol levels.

    The chills are normal too. It seems like that is the first thing to go.

    congrats on six weeks!

  4. louise says:

    I agree with pinklikeabeacon. The shivery fits go away after a few weeks. I used to lie shivering under a blanket and feel the heat rising up off my body. The steroids have sure messed us up. Be resolved to never use a steroid again! xxx

    • Thanks Louise! I am so resolved. I wish I could go back in time and never have used them! By the way, is there a way for me to follow your blog even though mine is on WordPress and yours is on Blogspot???

  5. Mie Ululani says:

    wow this is amazing…it’s such a cliche but everything truly does happen for a reason. those are powerful reassurances from God. somehow depths of suffering bring moments of clarity like no other and it’s so refreshing and beautiful. i read someone somewhere once called it a “God-wink” like when coincidences or moments of clarity unfold at just the right instant! keep up your awesome dedication to your health…and turmeric is awesome right??!

    • aw thanks Mie! “God-wink”, yes that is the perfect term for it. Whenever I get down, I look at it this way…. if I didn’t have eczema, I would not have started this blog, therefore I would not have met all these wonderful people!! 😀

  6. Susan H. says:

    I truly believe that when one door closes another one opens. I also try to stop and see the beauty in my life and literally cling to hope to get me through the rough times. As my mother would say to me…”and this to shall pass.” In my mind, I would always hear myself say…”I truly hope so!” 🙂

    What a great blogging support network you have! 🙂

    • Thank you Susan! Yes, there truly are many fabulous and caring people on here! I am so thankful for them. Your mother had wise words, my mother always said the same thing to me (must be a mom thing 🙂 ) but they do know best!

  7. Jorge Valdez says:

    Romans 8:28

    And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

    Even though what you are going through seems bad, it will come toghether with other things in your life that have happened to you for something good. All that you percieve to be bad and things you see as good will all come together and God will bless you as long as you love God and have faith in his word. What you are going through right now will make you stronger and as long as your love for God remains true God will guide you, heal you, bless you and show you your purpose in life.

    God bless you.

    • I am always amazed by the kindness of strangers that stop by my blog and provide some encouraging words, and you are no exception. Thank you Jorge! As a Christian I know what you say to be true, but I need reminders all the time as it sometimes is hard to keep in mind that suffering really can be good and turn out for wonderful things. I needed to hear this today… God Bless You as well!

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