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A perplexed woman is pointing both left and right, not sure which way to go. There are thought bubbles on either side of her head.

Psoriasis & Family Obligations

I am all about family. I would be incomplete denial if I didn't recognize that sometimes, the line between having psoriasis and having family obligations clashes. What do I mean by that? Well, follow me as I try to explain.

Family can cause stress, stress can trigger a flare

Right now my psoriasis is flaring. I have never been totally clear, but on occasion, will experience a new sport or two and irritation will occur. When I flare, it is always caused by stress, my biggest trigger. My stress multiplied this past week when my aunt had a simple medical procedure that turned into a life or death situation.

A family affair

My family is not close-knit. There have been things that have happened over the years that pulled it apart. There are two family members, however, that I am really close with. Those are my aunt and her daughter. My cousin and I are only a year apart in age so we grew up being very close.

She has always had my back and I have always had her's. My aunt has always been more like my mother which I am truly grateful for. She has taught me so much over the years.

Trusting gut feelings

On the day of her procedure and after talking to my cousin, the decision was made for me to go about my day as planned. Due to all the COVID-19 restrictions, only one person was allowed to be with my aunt anyway.

Have you ever had a gut feeling that you simply should have done what you were thinking of doing? Somehow I just knew I should have been there even if it meant waiting in my car in the parking lot.

A stressful chain of events

My cousin kept in touch with me throughout the day of the procedure. Everything was moving along fine, the procedure was successful. A quick turn, the next update was the doctors had to take her back into surgery because she was bleeding. In the next turn, she was back out of surgery and would be placed in the intensive care unit for the night.

My heart sank. I knew I should have been there. For that day and the next, I was in constant touch with my cousin. Inside, I was a ball of mixed emotions. I struggled through it all. I felt so guilty. Finally, on the third day, I was able to rush to my cousin's side. Although I could not see my aunt in the hospital, I still went to support my cousin. She told my aunt I was there. It had to be enough.

I will accept this flare

Because of the stress I put on myself throughout all of this, I brought on my current psoriasis flare. I own it. However, I do not make apologies for caring about someone. One of the things I did when I first got psoriasis was to close myself off from everyone. It took a long time before I began feeling comfortable in my own skin.

So yes, I am all about those two family members and the bond we have. I will take having a flare as long as my aunt is still here with me a while longer. Psoriasis takes so much from us mentally and sometimes physically as well. I will accept this flare given the reason that contributed to it.

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The 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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