Hi, I’m Lanie and I have eczema. I’ve had eczema for at least 15 years now, but have probably had it my whole life and just didn’t recognize it. I have a place on my arm and leg where I’ve lost pigmentation of my skin because I had a reaction to sunscreen as a baby. Eczema used to make me ashamed of my body. I remember one summer I had horrible rashes on both legs and all I wore were pants.
I have experimented with soaps, lotions, deodorants, detergents and many more products. Using no soap and just washing with honey, which is unbelievably sticky. Using only coconut oil as moisturizer, which I seem to be highly sensitive to coconut as well. Trying the no shampoo idea while also not using deodorant, which was probably one of the lowest points in my journey. Trying any and all essential oils, which I also seem to be highly sensitive to.
I have tried to tailor my nutrition. For a few months after my second child, all I ate was sweet potatoes, rice and chicken. Another time I tried to incorporate raw milk and cheese and eggs and gained 30 lbs and felt so awful. I also figured out through an elimination diet that eggs cause my eczema to flare up.
I have had to learn that my eczema is not just a reaction from food. When a flare up would happen, in the past I would eat anything I wanted and quit working out. I thought if I can’t eat healthy and manage my symptoms then I’m just going to give up. This would make the flare up even worse and I would sink even further.
It’s tough. Having symptoms with nothing to grasp onto and no hope in sight is so darn trying on me. But I know stress makes my symptoms worse.
Some helpful things have been doing yoga and meditation. Focusing on the things I can control like my health and my nutrition are so key. Knowing when my body needs rest, which is more often than I want to admit. Being able to get back into moving my body when I feel the tug.
I have had to listen to my body and decide what is best for me at this precise moment. A flare up does not cause me to just give up and quit working out and quit eating well anymore. I know this is a process and it may be going on my entire life. I want to connect with others going through struggles without a name. Just because I don’t have a name for all these symptoms doesn’t mean I’m making them up.
Do you have something you’re dealing with that you don’t have a name for?