Daytona's Story

After trying multiple different remedies for her psoriasis with little success, Daytona felt as though the condition was dictating her life and knew she had to make a change. In her story she tells us about the challenges and rewards of choosing self-acceptance.

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In January 2020 I noticed a very small, itchy red patch on my arm, deciding to ignore it and continue with no thought towards it.

By the time March came round, that one small patch had spread throughout my body, covering my legs, torso and arms with aggravated hot spots. I quickly learned the torment these would bring to my daily life.

I remember mornings with blood on my sheets from scratching myself too violently. I remember tears of embarrassment and feeling my self-esteem slip away. I remember a summer of covering up.

At first, waiting on a dermatologist to confirm, we weren’t completely sure what was causing it, even with psoriasis being in the family. It led to many commenting on what they believed it to be.

For me, the worst part about my own patches are that they tend to form small circular rings that can be easily confused with ringworm.

Finally, after my appointment, I was confirmed to have plaque psoriasis and I could concentrate on how to heal.

And I tried. And tried. And tried.

I tried healing on the outside with creams and lotions.

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I tried healing from the inside with dietary changes and supplements. I even drank celery juice every morning and it was not pleasant.

I spent over a year trying everything I was told had a success story attached to it with very little success. In fact, the psoriasis continued to spread.

I remember feeling helpless and ugly, itchy and tormented, angry and devastated, all at the same time.

I could no longer wear what I wanted or used to. I could no longer go swimming or to the beach. I could barely look at myself in the mirror.

All of the failed attempts of finding the cure (while blatantly aware there is none), completely exasperated the last shred of hope I had.

At that moment, I knew I was at a particularly difficult crossroads. I could continue down this path, allowing the hatred of myself to dictate my life and possibly lead to my own downfall or I could learn to accept it as part of my own story.

I learned that peace can only come from within and, it’s true what they say, the greatest love is self-love. As soon as I stopped looking at myself disgusted and showed my body respect, I found others were unable to hold any power over me in those regards.

I’m not saying it’s easy. It’s taken me two years to gain some of my confidence back and my journey still has a long way to go.

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However, had I not started this self-acceptance journey and began to make peace with my psoriasis, I may have not had the strength I had recently when I was personally victimised for my psoriasis. Online bullying lead to a photo of me that showed my psoriasis being shared and ridiculed with very hurtful comments.

At first, it hurt like hell, particularly as some comments aligned with my own self destructive thoughts, but then I remembered my progress.

I now speak out about my experiences and I wear what I want to wear. I’ve actually never felt more comfortable in my own skin than I have recently, even with the patches.

Don’t get me wrong, there are days when I give in to the frustration of this condition, mentally and physically exhausted, but I’m finding my path back quicker each time.

And for every hateful comment I’ve either made to myself or had said to me, ten comments of support have come back from me speaking out about the difficulty of life with psoriasis.

Perhaps people don’t understand but we’ll never convince anyone without speaking out about it.

Remember, you are beautiful. There’s not one animal on this planet with patches I can think of that I don’t see the beauty in. Treat yourself like that, own your human Dalmatian appearance and don’t let the words of others dictate the actions of yours.

Read more real-life stories from people living with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.