7 MONTHS OF T.S.W.
To state I am in hell is an understatement. I am now 7 months into TSW and 2 weeks into Moisture Withdrawal. My body HATES this. I see a slight improvement on 2 or 3 spots on my face where ooze was much more prevalent 2 weeks ago, but other than that, my body is still raging from this MW.
I have needed much more help at home than in the past, leaving my husband no choice but to take most of August off from work. THEN, adding to the fun of this, we slept out in the living room for 2 weeks (literally the day I started the MW) because we had been infested with bed bugs. It took the pest control people 1.5 weeks to get us scheduled into their system. We asked for heat treatment since 1) it was less harmful than chemicals, and 2) it was more effective. However, it was way more expensive ($800– or so they say. We still have yet to see the bill from our office), and it was much more annoying than planned. As I sat on the couch, useless, my husband had to pack almost HALF the house up. There were so many stipulations as to what may or may not be left in the house.
We ended up driving down to my mother’s house that day (Wednesday, August 19th) with our 2 rats, our snake, our valuables, and 11 trash bags worth of clothes that needed to be heated in the dryer. Both my mother and my husband worked diligently as I rested. My stepfather treated Jack (my husband) to an authentic English dinner near their home while I had a nutritious salad with my mother at the house.
I am SO glad the bed bug debacle is over. Crossing our fingers that they do not come back.
We are also still planning on taking a trip up to the Georgia Aquarium for our 1 year anniversary/Jack’s Birthday (the 4th and the 10th of Sept) but we just realized why the hotels are so expensive: Labor Day Weekend. The ones we were looking at were usually $150-ish a night, but are now over $300 a night. Just our luck. We are now looking to get one about 20 miles out for $120 a night.
We are also facing a huge task in the middle of September. Jack is leaving to go on tour as an Assistant Carpenter for Disney on Ice. He will be gone for 6 months *sad face*. Because I am still in the woes of T.S.W., my mother offered for me to stay with her and my step father. At first, I was against this (personal reasons). However, as much as I would like to stay at my own place and have my own space, I will most likely need help every once in awhile. If I stayed in Gainesville, I couldn’t rely on others to take care of me. My amazing friend’s Ryan and Becky said they would be there for me (even with a new one about to be born any second!), as well as Jack’s current boss, Brad, and our lovely friend, Robin. As wonderful as that sounds, I am not their responsibility. Not only would my mother be able to help me if I moved in with her, but it is better for Jack and I, financially, to move me. No more rent, electric, water, and laundry. I will just give my mother a couple hundred a month and it’s all taken care of for me. That means Jack and I will be able to have a bit saved when he comes back. Breaking my lease is a whole other ballgame, but that’s life.
MOISTURE WITHDRAWAL (2 WEEKS)
As stated above, it has been beyond miserable, but I’m giving it until the end of August.
I have taken a TON of pictures these past two weeks, so I’ve decided to just collage a few together (so I don’t overwhelm anyone).
Here are four more photos that show the extent of damage I am dealing with…
My thumb is so angry with me/ is wholly covered. A lot of my fingers are starting to have it creep all the way up.
It’s been extremely uncomfortable. The mornings are the hardest and most painful. I try to shower twice a week. The shower is nice, but it’s pure hatred after. My skin dries back to being cracky and painful. My mouth usually cracks and bleeds, my ears usually stay angry. I keep my arms wrapped. It’s easier for me with the shedding and with the urge to itch.
I’ve been TEARING up my knees. They are so easy to sit and scratch. I’ve been trying to make an effort not to do that.
I just bought DSS (Dead Sea Salt) for the bath. I literally just tried it for the first time. It didn’t sting like most people say it does. I’ll try to take two of these a week, maybe three. It helps keep infection away. My under arms are oozy and smell (bleh) and taking a bath helps the smell a bit (for a few hours). I also add 6 drops of tea tree oil into the bath.
My poor scalp has so much dead skin caked onto it that my hair is sticking to my head. There are a few patches that the hair is sticking up straight, and then patches where it lays flat. I look like a crazy person. I feel like a crazy person.
I try to stay sane in all of this. My friend, Becky, checks in on me a lot through text and it makes me smile. She is truly a great friend. Also, I have lovely friends who have been checking in on me often (Marco, Mike, Alexis, Brianna), as well as those who have sent me lovely messages of encouragement and healing.
I am also unbelievably grateful to my family (mom and mom-in-law especially), the support group I have on Facebook, as well as ITSAN.org. If you have any questions concerning TSW/ Red Skin Syndrome and/or alternative remedies for eczema and dermatitis, check out their website. It is a non-profit that is all things Topical Steroid Addiction.
Keep up the fight, no matter how hard. Life is worth fighting for, and I am going to french kiss it when I am done with this soul-stealing condition.
Love, B. R. Wren