I had my rebound in January. This time, the rebound - flare was pretty aggressive. How do I even describe the extent of my flare? Felt like back to day 1 of TSW. In chills and pain with red, broken and inflamed skin on legs, arms, neck (practically the whole body). Awoken by itchiness every night. Swept piles of skin every morning and moisturized at least twice a day. The skin was red, sore, broken and painful. Every bath time was a torture as my skin stung so badly with contact of water. The pain was indescribable.
Red and inflamed
This looks gross but this is how my feet looked like days ago
Managing TSW and rebounds can be dampening and discouraging especially when I see improvements to my skin and the very next moment, it starts to regress again. I had two months of settled skin in November and December and January welcomed me with a reminder of what I went through in August last year.
I am not out of the rebound yet. Skin continues to be inflamed, itchy, red and painful. Despite how discouraging it can be, I choose to be upbeat about it and take the rebound in stride (with struggle of course). I went against the grain and joined my family in celebrating new year (yes, in my flares, cracked and painful skin). I cooked for the family (yam "abacus") and visited relatives (I actually entertained the thought of being home bound). I even attended a gathering with my old school mates. Ladies whom I have not met in the last 21 years! Was struggling if I should attend as I was definitely not looking and feeling my best. I did anyway. Well, I am glad I didn't allow this ailment to douse the enthusiasm and joy amidst the celebratory mood. I am glad I had the will and strength to work against the flesh...
Yam Abacus made from scratch. Thank God for the KitchenAid!
School mates whom I have not met in 21 years. My neck looks 3 tones darker. Nothing to do with the lighting. The skin is 'blackish' from inflammation. I must admit I was rather discouraged after the gathering. I was surrounded with beauties with perfect skin. Told Alex I felt I need to add 10 years to my age while my school mates can take 10 years off. It took me a while (like the night) to get over this.
As I reflect on this recent rebound, I am choosing to be thankful for this experience. Once again I am reminded on the frailty of this human body. Pain reminds of body's mortality. TSW reminds me that I must not be earth bound. Instead I must keep my eyes on Jesus and focus on everything heavenly, things that really matter (hey, looks don't matter ok!).
It is only when I keep my eyes on Jesus, I can find the strength to cope with discouragements. I can look beyond my ugliness and rise above all crippling thoughts and be bold to confront my condition. It is looking unto Jesus that I know I am not alone in this race of life. There is Jesus who will provide the grace and strength for me to complete this race. It is simply looking unto Jesus that I need to cope in life....
Hebrews 12: 1,2 "...let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."
I like this poem that my Church Pastor wrote. Inspired by the above verses, it speaks of why we need not give in to despair as God would revive and make us strong.... if only we look unto Jesus... xoxo