Have You Ever Wanted to Go to a Psoriasis Event?
Though oftentimes it may feel like it, you don't have to go at it alone when it comes to managing life with psoriasis. There are plenty of ways to find connection, behind the screen and in-person, all at your own comfort level. I use the word comfort lightly.
For the purpose of this article, I'm talking about in-person events. Conferences and fundraisers dedicated to psoriasis research, awareness, and connection.
Consider this your sign to say yes.
So, what about it? Have you seen an email or an ad for an event tailored for individuals with psoriasis? Has it piqued your interest, even just a little bit?
Do you ever find yourself daydreaming about what these events look like and if they are worth going to? Do you wonder what type of topics or discussions happen at these conferences? Will you actually find a connection or something interesting?
Well, listen up, I know psoriasis may take up a lot of your mental space, but you can take back control, reframe those thoughts and commit them to advocacy in your own way.
Stepping out of your psoriasis comfort zone
We would be lying if we said we never felt lonely as a result of our condition. So many people stare at our skin, enhancing our social anxiety. It is out of our comfort zone to dive into an event or conference full of people. Every time I think of going to an event, these things cross my mind too.
Stepping out of our comfort zone can be good - especially since psoriasis takes so much control of it. I know firsthand how welcoming these events can be and the sensitivity of the individuals that attend. It is a safe space for those living with psoriasis. Some people are new, some are old friends.
If you feel willing to commit, it will not be long before you find yourself coming back as a friend!
A place to feel comfortable in your own skin
For those with psoriasis, we put a protective bubble around ourselves. A shell - and I have the same one. Most people at these events do. We all have the ability to hide and conceal the drama psoriasis causes.
Well, let me tell you, this is the place where you can begin coming out of that shell and feel comfortable in your own skin. Where else can you be yourself if not among a group of others who have the same skin? And insecurities about that skin?
All you need to do is gently look around at these events and take in their participants. We're not showcasing, we're simply looking for connection in a world that stigmatizes us.
There is something to be learned...
Get ready to dive into research and education. Learn about your condition, its impact, and potential upcoming treatments for both psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. Sessions presented by both patients and doctors.
You'll hear stories and process emotions. You'll hear new information about psoriasis, it's related conditions. You'll also hear about the mental health connection and how to navigate it.
Psoriasis isn't going anywhere. As individuals living with this chronic condition, we have the opportunity to keep on top of the future of this condition and open ourselves to new ways to manage it.
Connecion and validation awaits you!
Many of the people at these events are there to network and find connections. They are beyond willing to exchange information or give you websites to learn more on your own. Being social is a great aspect of this disease. Finding you are not alone is such a comfort!
These events help us recognize that our story is not the only story. How you approach your story is up to you. Finding others who click with you is not just exciting; it is mentally healthy. Friendships start over connections.
Personally, I have acquired a second family. I encourage you to muster up the courage to attend the next event you see come across your line of vision. Prioritize yourself, your health, and your psoriasis story. I'll connect with you at the next event!
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