“I have Rosacea”

“Rosacea (roe-ZAY-she-uh) is a common skin condition that causes redness and visible blood vessels in your face. It may also produce small, red, pus-filled bumps. These signs and symptoms may flare up for a period of weeks to months and then diminish for a while. Rosacea can be mistaken for acne, an allergic reaction or other skin problems.

Rosacea can occur in anyone. But it most commonly affects middle-aged women who have fair skin. While there’s no cure for rosacea, treatments can control and reduce the signs and symptoms. If you experience persistent redness of your face, see your doctor for a diagnosis and proper treatment.” ~ https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/rosacea/symptoms-causes/syc-20353815

 

 

 

Sounds so simple doesn’t it? To many it might be, but not for me. More than 16 million Americans are reported to have rosacea.

What causes rosacea? Excellent question! According to the Mayo Clinic, “The cause of rosacea is unknown, but it could be due to a combination of hereditary and environmental factors.” ~ https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/rosacea/symptoms-causes/syc-20353815

Back in October, just before Halloween I noticed some irritation on my chin, tiny little bumps that oozed clear fluid and my skin had become quite sensitive, itchy and somewhat tender. The redness was embarrassing, looked like I had a red beard of inflammation. Unfortunately, I recognized it from something I had years ago on a couple of different occasions. I scheduled an appointment with my dermatologist and got my diagnosis. It was perioral dermatitis which “is a facial rash that tends to occur around the mouth. Most often it is red and slightly scaly or bumpy. Any itching or burning is mild. It may spread up around the nose, and occasionally the eyes while avoiding the skin adjacent to the lips.” ~ https://www.aocd.org/page/PerioralDermatitis

This was the third time in twenty years that I had perioral dermatitis. UGH….. Anyway, this time I went to a new dermatologist, a different clinic than the one I had previously gone to from years ago only because I had moved to a different state.

The dermatologist this time prescribed me a steroidal cream and two weeks worth of doxycycline. Sounds good, right? I would have thought so, too until when I was finished with my doxycycline I noticed that my condition wasn’t improving. It actually was getting worse. So, I went back to the clinic, but saw a different dermatologist this time. He assessed the condition, confirming it was still indeed perioral dermatitis. He looked at my record from my prior visit and told me that I shouldn’t have been prescribed a steroidal cream at all and advised me to stop using it. He then told me that I should have actually been prescribed an anti-steroidal cream instead and my prescription of doxycycline needed to be a stronger dose lasting for a month instead of the two weeks, unlike what his colleague had previously recommended for me to do. (Which has made me never want to see his colleague again. Anywho…)

I followed his advice, took the medication exactly like I was supposed to do and applied the anti-steroidal cream daily. Guess what?! My skin was starting to improve! YES, thank goodness!! Finally the tiny, itchy bumps were going away and the minor oozing had stopped.

…… BUT THEN…… I noticed that my skin was still having problems. Even though I could tell that the perorial dermatitis was going away, I was having skin issues of a different sort. On my face, not just on my chin this time, I was getting more bumps and redness. I could tell that it wasn’t from the previous condition, it was something else. There were these pustule nodules forming and they were painful and very red. It was getting to the point where people were starting to ask me, “what’s going on with your face?” Talk about the embarrassment! Here I am 42 years old and dealing with the face of a pubescent teenager, or so I felt. I was completely aggravated… mortified! I tried natural remedies like making my own facial scrub using lemon and sugar…. I also tried witch hazel… store bought masks…. OTC products… nothing worked! I was trying not to have to go back to the dermatologist. I was getting so discouraged and didn’t want to be seen publicly anywhere. All I wanted to do was hide in the darkest corner away from everyone. It’s been that embarrassing for me! Was I being a tad bit dramatic? I don’t think so because for anyone who’s dealt with these issues, then they unfortunately know exactly what I’m talking about.

So, finally after weeks of dealing with ongoing skin problems that were continually getting worse, I bit the bullet and scheduled another appointment (the third one since October) with my dermatologist. I saw the same dermatologist as I did the second time because I felt confident with him. He walked into the room and immediately started listening to all I had to say. He confirmed that the perorial dermatitis had in fact cleared up, but took a deeper look at my face. He then pointed out the flushing on my cheeks and the visible small blood vessels that are on both sides of my nose, along with my redness and bumps. That’s when he said the dreaded words….. “You have rosacea.”. I was like, “what?!” My dermatologist then continued that it was nothing to worry about and that he has rosacea as well.

He gave me a short list of some triggers that can cause rosacea flare-ups, plus he advised me on skincare tips to help prevent any worsening of this condition. He also prescribed me Soolantra, which is a cream that helps reduce rosacea bumps and blemishes. So far, so good…. it’s been three weeks since my last appointment and things are improving, slowly but surely.

Upon my research of rosacea, it is a skin condition with no cure, meaning that anyone who has it will have it for the rest of their lives. Treatment is available, the sooner the better because untreated rosacea can worsen greatly over time, causing permanent skin damage, including skin thickening of the nose making it appear bulbous and swollen. “Phymatous rosacea is more common in men than women, and although the thickened skin and irregular surface nodules may affect other areas of the face, it is most often involves the nose. Mild cases may be treated with medications, but more severe cases of rhinophyma typically require surgery.” ~ https://www.rosacea.org/blog/2017/february/tvs-the-doctors-shows-life-changing-surgery-for-rosacea

“Rosacea can cause eyelids to become red, swollen, and sties may develop. The area around the eyelid may develop a crust or scaling and, much like the nose and cheeks, blood vessels may become visible.” ~ https://www.mdlive.com/7-signs-rosacea/ Which can eventually lead to eye irritation and vision problems.

“Rosacea is more common in women than men, but in men, the symptoms can be more severe. It can also become progressively worse. Leaving it untreated can cause significant damage, not only to the skin, but to the eyes as well. That’s why it’s so important to visit a dermatologist at the earliest sign of these symptoms.” ~ https://www.mdlive.com/7-signs-rosacea/

I am extremely grateful that I went back to the dermatologist, which led to the diagnosis of my rosacea. Knowing what I know now has answered so many questions that I’ve had for a while regarding my face…. like the sensitivity to certain products… the random breakouts which I now know are flare-ups…. why even things including atmospheric conditions like humidity, hot or cold temperatures, and wind will often irritate my skin. However, I will say that I’ve been noticing the flushing on my cheeks and the visible blood vessels around my nose for a long time, but never thought much about it until my skin worsened.

This has definitely been an eye-opener for me. Learning what can trigger flare-ups is something that I am steadily reading about. What kinds of foods to eat, being wise about what kind of facial products to use to cleanse my face (I recommend Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Daily Cleanser. “It’s formulated with a hypoallergenic fragrance that’s free of known skin allergens and irritating essential oils. It’s been clinically proven to be gentle for cleansing sensitive skin, including acne-prone skin, eczema, rosacea and atopic dermatitis.

So far the cleanser has proven to be fantastic for my skin! Not using a washcloth to wash my face has helped a great deal, too! I have read that people with rosacea have to be careful even with doing so because the cloth and facial sponges can be too aggressive on our skin. And getting facials, sitting in saunas and other things like that are not necessarily the best idea for people with this skin condition. Also, modifying my exercise routine. Wait, why that?! Because the elevation of body temperature may also bring on the possibility of a flare-up. So I make sure to drink water as I workout to help maintain a cooler body temperature. When going outdoors be sure to always use a sunscreen, especially one that’s made for people with rosacea.

Like I mentioned earlier, being mindful of certain foods that can cause flare-ups like certain spices, spicy foods, citrus, dairy… the list is actually quite lengthy. Even hot beverages such as coffee and teas can be a no-no. I’ve learned to drink my hot beverages at a much lower temperature. (This part has been difficult because I do love my hot coffee and hot herbal teas!)

Other triggers for many people are sunlight, wind, certain kinds of make-up, emotions, alcohol, certain drugs that can dilate blood vessels such as blood pressure medications.

As far as foods go that have been triggers for me that I’ve discovered so far are citrus fruits, tomatoes, chili, pizza, anything with excessive sugar or white flour.. even the cinnamon infused water that I used to drink on a daily basis I’ve had to stop because of the flare-ups. I’ve also had to stop with my vinegar dose that I would take daily as an aid to help with my arthritis. Even things like mustard, strawberries, spinach and chocolate (which I love all) can be triggers. I’ve recently discovered that mouthwash with alcohol as an ingredient even triggers my rosacea. Crazy, huh?! Finding what triggers my rosacea will be a continuing lesson as time goes on. I’ve learned that triggers can be different from one person to the next, meaning that what may cause a flare-up for someone may not necessarily cause a flare-up for someone else.

My research on the topic has been extensive so far, and let me just tell you…. WOW!! But I am learning and I will get my rosacea under control. I understand that it won’t happen overnight, unfortunately, but it will be under control. The important part is that I was diagnosed with it early, thankfully!

And the month of April is known as Rosacea Awareness Month. “The goal of Rosacea Awareness Month is to spread public education on this disease so that more people who may have rosacea seek medical help before it gets worse, and so those whose lives are affected can find greater public acceptance and understanding.” ~ rosacea.org https://www.rosacea.org/patients/rosacea-awareness-month

“Getting treatment is a must, so make sure you see your doctor. If you don’t take care of your rosacea, redness and swelling can get worse and might become permanent.” ~ webMD

 

 

 

Famous people with rosacea:

Bill Clinton (42nd President of the United States)

Renee Zellweger (Actress)

Diana, Princess of Whales

Prince William (Diana’s son)

W.C. Fields (Early film star from the 1920s and 1930s.)

Cameron Diaz (Actress)

Sam Smith (Musician)

Cynthia Nixon (Actress)

Rembrandt van Rijn (17th century Dutch painter)

Dita Von Teese (Model)

Lisa Faulkner (Celebrity chef)

 

 

The following are some really great sites that I’ve discovered regarding rosacea:

National Rosacea Society: https://www.rosacea.org/

American Academy of Dermatology, Inc.: https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/acne-and-rosacea/rosacea

healthline.com Rosacea Diet: Foods to Eat and Foods to Avoid for Calmer Skin: https://www.healthline.com/health/rosacea-diet

webMD: What is Rosacea: https://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/understanding-rosacea-basics#1

 

 

 

So, wow!! A lot of info…. and so much more to learn!! If any of you have rosacea, please feel free to share. What are your triggers and how do you manage any flare-ups?

 

 

 

 

Get a copy of my novel, The Spirit Within on Amazon!

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Twitter: @sheilarparker.

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Facebook: Sheila Renee Parker – Author

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Instagram: @sheilareneeparker

~ Art by Sheila Renee Parker available at: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sheilarenee-parker.html

~ Sheila Renee Parker on YouTube: Sheila Renee Parker

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

‘Tis the Holidays!!!

The holidays are here and I hope you all have amazing plans for this wonderful time of year! My family and I will be spending a few days with our loved ones in Tennessee, some much needed time that has been long overdue. We definitely can’t wait!!

Whether one lives hundreds of miles away from loved ones (like my family and I do) or if one simply lives right down the road, it’s extremely important to stop our daily routines to make time to be with those we hold dear in our hearts. Yesterday is just a memory while tomorrow is never promised, so live in the moment and make today the best one ever! Carpe diem! Why? Because life is short and we may never get a second chance to enjoy it!!

So, sip on your egg nog, hot cocoa, apple cider or whatever makes your tummy warm and laugh with those who make you happy. Negate all that is negative and know in your heart that there is a wondrous blessing to behold each and every single day. Hug your family and friends, always keeping them close, even though the miles may say otherwise, the distance can never diminish the bond.

From our home to all of yours!! Merry Christmas & A Very Happy New Year!!!

Love, Sheila & family ❤

 

 

 

 

Screenshot_2018-12-18-22-15-13~2

“Spooky Random Fact: #21”

“Spooky Random Fact: #21”

Street Light Interference….. what is this electrical phenomenon?

It’s a supernatural ability claimed by those who believe they have the power to manipulate outdoor lighting, like street lights, by turning them on or off at will when approaching them. A popular theory shared by believers suggest that individuals with this extraordinary ability can create street light interference by using the energy they emit from their own bodies. People who supposedly have this ability are referred to as Sliders.

Many skeptics believe that the cause behind SLI (Street Light Interference) is from the idea that street lights have timers and that the SLI events are simply pure coincidental when the lights happen to turn on or off at the exact same time when Sliders are near. Some skeptics even blame the lights going out on old, burned out light bulbs.

There is another phenomenon that closely resembles Street Light Interference and this other one is referred to as…. Read more at Street Light Interference: An Electrical Phenomenon

 

 

 

 

 

Get a copy of my novel, The Spirit Within on Amazon!

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Twitter: @sheilarparker.

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Facebook: Sheila Renee Parker – Author

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Instagram: @sheilareneeparker

~ Art by Sheila Renee Parker available at: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sheilarenee-parker.html

~ Sheila Renee Parker on YouTube: Sheila Renee Parker

 

 

 

“Spooky Random Fact: #20”

“Spooky Random Fact: #20”

 “Wiccaphobia” … now this phobia is rather interesting to me…..

Why? Because of my own personal beliefs and spiritual journey. Wiccaphobia: which is the fear of witches and/or witchcraft. I am Wiccan, a solitary one who practices the use of white magic, and there’s definitely no reason to fear anything I do. I only believe in promoting love and light. I am well aware of those who practice dark magic, and I also stay away from them. However, that doesn’t mean that I fear them.

But respectfully, it’s easy to fear that which one doesn’t understand. It takes strength, courage and faith to overcome adversity. That’s why I always encourage educating oneself. It helps to eliminate misinformation and eradicate fears.

To learn more about other phobias, including Samhainphobia: which is the fear of Halloween, read more at Phasmophobia: A Ghostly Fear.

 

 

 

 

Get a copy of my novel, The Spirit Within on Amazon!

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Twitter: @sheilarparker.

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Facebook: Sheila Renee Parker – Author

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Instagram: @sheilareneeparker

~ Art by Sheila Renee Parker available at: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sheilarenee-parker.html

~ Sheila Renee Parker on YouTube: Sheila Renee Parker

 

 

 

 

The Third Eye Kiss

Such a wonderful, healing gesture that takes very little effort, yet can do so much for an individual.

All one has to do is softly press their lips on the forehead of another, in the center, slightly above the eyebrows. It’s that simple. What does this beautiful act do? “It activates the pineal and pituitary gland of the person and brings a sense of security and well-being to the person.” ~ www.WisdomHealingCenter.com.

When the glands are stimulated, melatonin is released which is a hormone that humans and animals produce that regulates sleep and wakefulness. Hence, a goodnight kiss on the forehead might be just what the doctor could order for those who may be suffering from insomnia.

Here is something else I found interesting. Our pineal glands produce the most potent psychedelic known to man, dimethyltryptamine. Researchers of dimethyltryptamine suggest that it may help encourage personal empowerment, decrease the symptoms of depression and anxiety, and inspire self esteem, just to name a few. So, with all that being said about the pineal gland, it makes even more sense why the third eye kiss is so beneficial to one’s well-being!

It could also bridge the gap between two souls wanting to connect on a more spiritual level, therefore creating a closer bond with the mind, body and Spirit….. a Universal connection on so many levels.

 

“You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us. And the world will live as one.” ~ John Lennon

 

 

 

Get a copy of my novel, The Spirit Within on Amazon!

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Twitter: @sheilarparker.

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Facebook: Sheila Renee Parker – Author

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Instagram: @sheilareneeparker

~ Art by Sheila Renee Parker available at: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sheilarenee-parker.html

~ Sheila Renee Parker on YouTube: Sheila Renee Parker

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Spooky Random Fact: #19”

“Spooky Random Fact: #19”

Automatic writing….. hmmmm…..

What is this mysterious form of writing and why are some so enraptured by it while others find it insidious? The practice of automatic writing (a.k.a. psychography) is a supernatural ability used by many individuals to communicate with spirits.

Often a person will sit in a trance-like state with a small chalkboard and a piece of chalk. While channeling, the individual allows the spirit to communicate through them. The person will transcribe the spirit’s message onto the chalkboard. This can also be done with the use of pen and paper. The individual, through which the spirit is communicating, claims to have no control over what’s being written, claiming that the spirit is in total control.

The mere thought of doing such an act frightens many people because of the idea of spirits entering (even if it’s for a brief period of time) a person’s body. They fear the possibility of a spiritual attachment. The use of a Ouija Board has also been considered a form of automatic writing.

A well-known case of automatic writing comes from the nineteenth century. New York Supreme Court Judge, John Worth Edmonds didn’t express any interest in automatic writing until after the passing of his wife. Even though Judge Edmonds put his career on the line, that didn’t stop him from pursuing communication with the spiritual world. Along with the help from his spiritualist friends, the judge claimed to have communicated with both historic figures….. Read more at Automatic Writing

 

 

 

 

Get a copy of my novel, The Spirit Within on Amazon!

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Twitter: @sheilarparker.

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Facebook: Sheila Renee Parker – Author

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Instagram: @sheilareneeparker

~ Art by Sheila Renee Parker available at: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sheilarenee-parker.html

~ Sheila Renee Parker on YouTube: Sheila Renee Parker

 

 

 

“I…. Am…. A Man!”

Joseph Carey Merrick, a.k.a. “The Elephant Man”.

On August 5,1862, Joseph Carey Merrick (who was often incorrectly referred to as John Merrick) was born in Leicester, England. His parents were Joseph Rockley Merrick and Mary Jane Merrick. During his early years in life, Joseph Carey began to suffer from extreme facial and body deformities. He appeared to have thick and lumpy skin. His lips became rather enlarged, and a bony lump started to grow on his forehead. One arm and both feet also grew to be enlarged and during his childhood he had fallen, damaging his left hip which caused him permanent lameness.

At the age of only eleven years old, Joseph Carey’s mother passed away. The cause of her death was bronchopneumonia. His father remarried not long after. Wrongly, he and his new wife rejected Joseph, treating him like an outcast. Joseph Carey was forced to leave home, finding shelter at the residence of his uncle, Charles Merrick.

At thirteen years old, Joseph gained employment working at Freeman’s Cigar Factory in Leicester. And then, in December 1879, at seventeen years of age, he joined the Leicester Union Workhouse. A few years later in 1884, Joseph got in contact with Sam Torr who was a showman. Joseph suggested that Sam should put Joseph up as an exhibit because of his unusual deformities.

Torr agreed on the proposition and along with a group of men who managed Joseph, they came up with Joseph’s exhibit’s name of “The Elephant Man”. After touring for some time, Joseph made a trip to London to be put on exhibit in a penny gaff located on Whitechapel Road which was rented by Tom Norman who was also a showman. Norman’s shop was located right across the street from the London Hospital.

Frederick Treves, who was a surgeon from the hospital, visited Norman’s shop. Dr. Treves automatically showed interest in Joseph Carey Merrick. The doctor invited Joseph to the hospital to be examined and photographed. This made Joseph feel uncomfortable, like an animal, and he refused to return to the London Hospital. This angered Dr. Treves and oddly enough, Norman’s shop was closed by local authorities. Upset by it all, Joseph decided to seek another opportunity elsewhere and joined a gentleman by the name of Sam Roper who owned a traveling circus that toured throughout Europe.

As time went on, Joseph was unfortunately robbed in Belgium, abandoned in Brussels, and finally made his way back to the London Hospital. Dr. Treves allowed Joseph to stay the remainder of his life at the hospital, free room and board. With daily visits from Dr. Treves, the two men quickly formed a remarkable friendship. Even the wealthy elite, including Alexandra, Princess of Wales visited Joseph.

And then, on April 11, 1890, Joseph Carey Merrick sadly died at the age of twenty-seven years old of asphyxia which is a condition where the body is seriously deprived of oxygen. It was believed that he was awake, attempting to get up from his bed just prior to his death. He was found stretched across his bed with a dislocated neck. Perhaps the weight of his head was too much for his neck to support. His skeletal remains can be found on display in the Royal London Hospital, which is a large educational facility in London, England.

It’s said that one of Joseph Carey Merrick’s favorite poems was:

“Tis true my form is something odd,                                                                               but blaming me is blaming God.                                                                                Could I create myself anew,                                                                                               I would not fail in pleasing you.

If I could reach from pole to pole                                                                                      or grasp the ocean with a span,                                                                                         I would be measured by the soul.                                                                                 The mind’s the standard of the man.”

 

 

“I am not an animal! I am a human being! I … am … a man!” ~ Joseph Carey Merrick, a.k.a. “The Elephant Man”.

 

 

 

 

Get a copy of my novel, The Spirit Within on Amazon!

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Twitter: @sheilarparker.

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Facebook: Sheila Renee Parker – Author

~ Sheila Renee Parker on Instagram: @sheilareneeparker

~ Art by Sheila Renee Parker available at: https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/sheilarenee-parker.html

~ Sheila Renee Parker on YouTube: Sheila Renee Parker

 

 

 

 

Here is the artwork that I created in honor of Joseph Carey Merrick simply titled, “The Elephant Man”. Prints, pillows, blankets and even stationary…. available only at Fine Art America!

(“The Elephant Man” ~ by Sheila Renee Parker. Prints, tote bags, coffee mugs and so much more available only at https://fineartamerica.com/featured/the-elephant-man-sheila-renee-parker.html!)