5 Things I Learned by Having Psoriasis

Living with psoriasis is a chronic condition that has no cure, so if one is diagnosed with it, you better believe that it's a fight they will face for their entire life. With that being said, at times living with this disease will cause you to focus on a lot of the negative. I definitely have my troubles with psoriasis but in the same notion, it is bittersweet because the disease has brought along some amazing character traits. Here are 5 things I've learned by having psoriasis. Once you finish reading please comment with positive things you've learned from living with the disease.

Psoriaisis has helped me become more compassionate towards others

"Let us fill our hearts with our own compassion - towards ourselves and towards all living beings." - Thich Nhat Hanh

Due to psoriasis, I know what it feels like to be discriminated against, teased, and judged. I think all of mankind have experienced those adversities to some effect, but when you have a chronic illness especially a visible disease I feel as though the odds of facing those challenges increase significantly. Now when I see anyone facing troubles, especially ones involving diseases and disabilities, I feel as though I can relate to them more. It might be a different issue but mentally I find myself relating to their emotions and feelings. I'm not so quick to judge or make mean comments about things which I see that are different.

Psoriasis helped me to understand the depths of true beauty

"Beauty is when you can appreciate yourself. When you love yourself, that's when you're most beautiful." -Zoe Kravitz

There was a time that I prayed for psoriasis free skin because I thought it would make me more attractive and more beautiful to those around me. There was a time where I felt ugly because of my disease. But having psoriasis has taught me what real beauty is all about. As the quote above says beauty is about loving your whole self including your flaws. Once I started to accept my disease I started to love myself more and I found the courage to express what it's like living with a chronic illness.  Psoriasis taught me that beauty is truly skin deep and really depends on the essence of a person's heart.

Psoriasis reminds me to love myself unconditionally

"Accept yourself, love yourself." -Chanel Iman

I've never love myself as much as I do right now. I'm thankful for who I am and the challenges I've faced. Although psoriasis has it's difficult moments, I'm thankful that I've been given the opportunity to share my struggles to help others. In sharing my story it has made me have unconditional love for myself and to recognize when others truly love me which was once a challenge for me. When I didn't love myself I didn't think others loved me. I've accepted my disease 100% and I love who I am because of it.

Psoriasis taught me to let go of shame

“Shame corrodes the very part of us that believes we are capable of change.”

― Brene Brown

I use to be ashamed of my height (I'm really tall for a woman), my looks, my weight, and especially my psoriasis. In finding the ability to let go of my shame for psoriasis I found the strength off letting go of the same in all areas of my life. Telling my story has been therapy for me. Each time I reveal a part of myself it's like I'm lifting the veil of shame and telling it that it has no place in my heart.

Several people live in shame and fear

"The fear really hits you. That's what you feel first. And then it's the anger and frustration. Part of the problem is how little we understand about the ultimate betrayal of the body when it rebels against itself." - Charles Bronson

Back in 2011, I attended my first National Psoriasis Foundation Volunteer Conference. While there I ran across an extremely familiar face of a gentleman who also had psoriasis. After conversing with him for a bit I discovered he was a special needs teacher at the elementary school I once attended. For years we had passed each other by not realizing we both were dealing with psoriasis because neither one of us talked about it. This has been the story between myself and several people I know from college and high school. Once I started sharing my story people that I knew started to reveal that they too dealt with the disease but was too afraid to talk about it.

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