Have you ever been asked that weird question, "What's your favorite feature about yourself?" Well, as awkward as that question makes me feel, I usually answer, "My hair." I can't take much credit for it though. I inherited my hair from my dad who has great hair. There are lots of cowlicks but they're hidden by length. It's thick and doesn't require much maintenance. Up until last year, I didn't have to worry much about it. Then last year the dermatologist said I had some dandruff. No problem. Some Head & Shoulders and all would be well. Not exactly. In December, I noticed a nasty bump on my head and considering I had already had a melanoma scare I rushed to the dermatologist. She looked it and diagnosed it as scalp psoriasis. She gave me some prescriptions for special ointments and shampoos to clear my scalp, but it didn't clear away immediately. Since then, I've struggled on and off continually and had varying levels of success with removing the plaques and flakes. There are photos below, but be warned. It is kind of gross.
I find it embarrassing and frustrating to deal with for two reasons. 1.) It is so petty. There are people all around me with serious conditions and my little issue with a flaky scalp is nothing to complain about, especially when it isn't flaring up, but it is still frustrating. 2.) During a flare-up caused by who knows what, my scalp will burn with dull pain and itch incessantly. When it is bad my scalp burns and washing and styling it can be painful. For several months I've been going with a wavy style to avoid using a hairdryer.
For a few years, I've been seeing a stylist I liked. She won my trust after a tragic grill incident where I singed my hair. I called her crying because of the smell and the horror at losing my hair. (Remember it's my favorite thing.) She was the only open salon on a summer Monday. Now I laugh when I think of me sobbing, "My HAIR!" While in the bathroom upstairs. (Overdramatic much?) Although I like her, I haven't seen her due to the incessant flaking and pain that could occur when I went in for color.
So today, I went to a hair care center that specializes in scalp issues. Clients are seen in private rooms and treated with special natural shampoos that gently treat the scalp. My stylist Samantha was wonderful as she talked with me about psoriasis and how to style my hair during a flare-up to minimize the appearance of flakes. We even discussed bangs and decided to try some curtain bangs because, well, why not?
So this is me. I am sorry for droning on about my hair and its quirks, but I do want to encourage anyone out there who has embarrassing skin issues. It's okay to struggle. It's okay to feel frustrated and grossed out. You are not alone. You are beautiful. You are loved.
This is me. Real and unfiltered.
We all dream big and do our best, but putting ourselves out there can be uniting because we realize that we are not alone in our struggles and emotions. This isn't a page where I seek answers, but rather I seek to connect with others and show that we are all works in progress.