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Charlotte has had psoriasis for as long as she can remember and says that she refuses to let her skin define her. Here she shares her experiences and how her positivity was tested when she was unable to join the RAF.
It feels like I have had psoriasis since the day I was born. I do not remember having a single day of my life without having to check for flakes on my clothes or a single holiday without a suitcase of magic potions in my bag. I am currently 25 and have tried most treatments. My psoriasis has a mind of its own and I’ve grown to accept it and its flamboyant nature.
I have never let my psoriasis define who I am or govern my life. The first time it ever stopped me doing anything in my life was when I wanted to join the RAF. I was angry, I felt as though they did not understand the condition, they had no right to preclude entry because of the condition! Did they truly understand? If they did, I felt as though they would have seen past my skin.
Anyway, to cut a long story short, after a lengthy conversation with a recruitment officer they finally made me understand by asking me that ‘If I had none or ran out of medication whilst in the field, would I be able to continue?’ I answered, 'yes!' However, I suddenly saw it from their point of view and thought that maybe becoming a firefighter would be better!
I try to think positively about my psoriasis and sometimes forget I even have it. However, I cannot deny that it does mentally affect me if I am stressed or upset about anything, my skin knows before I do! I get most upset when I hear distressing stories of other people suffering with the condition. My heart hurts and I just want to do something to help. It’s not right that people are suffering in silence, the general public should know the damage their looks can cause.
So, I am doing something to help! I am currently organising an expedition to climb Mt Kilimanjaro with others who have the condition. To show the world that yes, we have psoriasis, but do not judge us by our skin, judge us by our strength and determination to overcome our trials and tribulations! There is much more Beneath the Skin!
If anyone would like to know more about the expedition, they are welcome to contact me.