Dear Grandma

Dear Grandma,

I hope you’re having a great day. I was just sitting here in my dorm room thinking about you and this question crossed my mind. I have always wanted to ask you why you were always covered in clothes my whole life?

“Our trips to the pool always included your trusty pair of pants with a seeming strong desire to not get in the pool.”

Every summer, you would always be cautious about what you wore outside. It was always long sleeve shirts, long pants; even in 100-degree weather. You must have had a cold body temperature because even on days where I would beg for water, you still wore long shirts and long pants. I don’t remember ever seeing you in a pair of shorts, sandals or flip flops. Our trips to the pool always included your trusty pair of pants with a seeming strong desire to not get in the pool.

As I slowly started to grow up, I began to question all the white flakes on your arms and legs; my curiosity would get the best of me as I began to touch them. They felt very flaky and crusty. I was absolutely fascinated; I’ve never seen anything like that before on anybody and I was astonished that I had never noticed it before. After all, I was always around you.

“Many questions ran through my head: Why is the ‘P’ silent? You said it was heredity; will I get it too?

You sit me down and tried to explain what psoriasis was. You said that your skin grows faster than mine and that cuts heal very quickly. You explained that there was no cure for it. Many questions ran through my head: Why is the ‘P’ silent? You said it was heredity; will I get it too? Is this why we have to clean and vacuum the house all time? So many questions raced through my head as you dropped this news on me. You encouraged me to always ask questions if I didn’t understand something.

I remember one day looking at myself in the mirror and panicked over an acne pimple that popped up on my face! I ran to you and screamed: “I got it Grandma! I got what you got! I’m going to turn into a fish that flakes!” You calmed me down and told me that it was only a pimple and that I was going to be alright, it will go away if you wash your face.

“I started crying for you and told you, “Grandma we can do this another day.””

I think I will never forget the day you were going to take me to the amusement park. You told me you were erythrodermic. I didn’t know what that meant, but I noticed you could hardly walk. The sun was shining so bright and I could see the pain on your face. I started crying for you and told you, “Grandma we can do this another day.”

As I think back over the years as I have become older, I realize it didn’t seem to matter what season it was; you would always have psoriasis all over you. There have been so many days where we had to change our plans for that day because of your psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis.

Despite everything that you went through, we took plenty of road trips together over the past 19 years; despite the pain you were in that day. You even drove me 18 hours to my first day of college.

“My question shouldn’t be why you were always covered in clothes, but how do I return the favor?”

Yes, we did have to change our plans a lot, but you made those days special by setting up movie nights and buying me popcorn that would always seem to disappear a few minutes before the movie would start. All the pizza parties, the ice cream socials, and even the rare Jell-O night made me watching you deal with your psoriasis like it was the furthest thing on my mind.

Grandma, maybe I didn’t notice how bad you had psoriasis all those years, most likely because you made me focus on the bigger picture: I had a grandmother that loved and cared about me. My question shouldn’t be why you were always covered in clothes, but how do I return the favor? I know how. I’m going to be a dermatologist for my super Grandma Diane.

Love you forever,
Nikyla

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The PlaquePsoriasis.com team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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