Tag Archives: stress induced dyshidrotic eczema

My itching, oozing, weeping, open wounded, dry, scaly, flaky, cracking eczema Hands: A lament

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My itching, oozing, weeping, open wounded, dry, scaly, flaky, cracking eczema Hands: A lament

In the past, I have written about and mentioned “my hands.”   For the past two years, I have suffered from an onslaught of what the medical profession calls, “Dyshidrotic Eczema.” I call it “torture” or “The Beast.” When I’m having an “outbreak”, my hands are practically useless. Do you have any idea what it is like to not be able to use your hands? Some of you, who may suffer from this ailment will have no problem answering with a resounding, “YES. I DO know what that is like.” Some of you reading this who may suffer from much worse ailments than I am about to write about…please forgive me if my plight seems trivial to you. There are many, many worse things that could have happened to me or could happen to me in the future. I am well aware of that. Please, however, remember that I am describing what ails me. I have a healthy perspective that it could “always be worse.” However, there is no reason for me to not tell my story simply because there are worse tales to tell. I personally believe my tale to be pretty horrible. I’m not stuck on that negativity any more…but this story needs to be told. This post will be therapeutic for me. My hope is that it will also help my fellow suffers of this disease/ailment.

Let’s begin with a brief description of my fingers: Cracking, oozing, bleeding, popping, rash covered, itching, fluid filled, crusty, sausage-like. When this disease first began, it was centralized to my fingers. Then it spread across the top of my hands, into the creases of my elbows, up my arms and across my chest. It also affected my right eyelid.

Next, let’s include a few pictures. They aren’t great…but remember, I couldn’t use my hands…so holding an electronic device with oozing fingers covered in coconut oil wasn’t great idea. Documenting them at their worst (this time), however, was important to me. I knew that one day they would heal, even though through the worst of it, it felt hopeless. I wanted to die.  I lost all faith in myself. I just wanted to be able to interact with my world.

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I wore gloves so that I wouldn’t scratch open my blisters. I wore gloves so that I wouldn’t have to see my hands. I wore gloves to attempt to keep my sanity intact. I wore gloves so that I would feel normal. I wore gloves…so that I wouldn’t grease the doors, door knobs, refrigerator, dryer, washer, dishwasher, bed, chairs, blankets… etc, etc, etc, of our home.

I am really upset with how allopathic medicine has failed to do much research about eczema. Eczema is like Cancer, in that no one can really give a definite, scientific answer as to WHY it happens…WHERE it comes from. It is a mystery. In a set of previous blogs that I have written about my skin and Dyshidrotic Eczema, I have seen a resounding number of fellow suffers mention that they believe that this disorder begins in the gut. I am highly interested in this theory, although I have not yet tested it out myself. The GAPS diet keeps appearing in discussions about DE. “Heal the gut, heal your skin” is repeated. Take probiotics. Take vitamins. Use this lotion, not that one. Don’t eat this. Drink this, not this. At this point in my life, my hands are in “remission” so I am trying to do all I can to NOT focus on my skin as much as I was forced to in the past when they were in outbreak stage. It seems that when my hands start getting bad, I instantly begin attempting to find a cure for myself. When my hands are manageable, I try to live life at its fullest. Perhaps I should keep putting positive energy for a cure into my daily regiment…but frankly, it is exhausting to constantly think about the “what if’s, maybe I could’s, should I not’s, I could change“…and on and on. So now, I’m going to tell you what I have done in the past. I’m going to relay to you my trials and errors. Before I begin, however, I must relay to you that I believe that this ailment is not only caused by problems in the gut. I believe that it is also caused by problems in the mind.

When our second son was born, it was magical. I gave birth to him naturally in a tub of tepid water. My husband and two midwifes were there to witness his birth. He was born “in the caul.” Well, not fully in the caul, but he had a little magic cap upon his entrance into the world. The first few months were great, but then we began having trouble with breastfeeding. He cried, oh man did he cry…it was painful to hear, especially to a new Mother. Nothing I could do would stop the crying. It was torturous. We were never given a medical reason for his cries, other than he was a very vocal child and that he probably had colic. My hands/skin responded with a fight or flight response. I felt helpless. My hands became mannequin hands. I couldn’t bend my fingers. I doused them in steroid cremes, but they didn’t help. Then I had steroid withdrawals, and red skin syndrome. This experience caused me to be terrified of steroids. It also made me a bit crazy.

So…where to turn next? The internet, I suppose. I found Plantain. I began going out into our yard to make plantain poultices. It DID work well for me, but the blisters kept on coming. I still recommend plantain. I began using coconut oil as a moisturizer. Then I found a product called, “Elta Tar.” It seemed to keep the blisters at bay and calm the itching, but then one day I read the fine print on the container while I was soaking my hands in the product and read that it had been known to Cause cancer. WTF. Great. I returned to the coconut oil.

Next I tried Magnesium Oil. It was VERY painful to place on my hands, because there was ALWAYS an open wound. I couldn’t handle it. It did stop the itching…but only because the itching was replaced by stinging and pain. I returned to using only coconut oil.

I decided to make a trip to the allergist. The dermatologist had only prescribed steroid cremes that made it worse, so I was afraid of him/sterioids. The allergist ordered a prick test for allergies, performed on my back. It came back that I was allergic to 21 out of the 60 things I was tested for. I stopped eating everything that I tested positive for, including cow’s milk products (cheese!), chicken, turkey, fish, egg whites, strawberries, garlic, oats…

Then I tried Apple Cider Vinegar Soaks. This type of pain was worse than childbirth. It was excrutiating to put open wounds into vinegar. What was I thinking? Well, if you are a fellow sufferer, you know that you’ll try ANYTHING. I spoke out loud to my husband that the pain and stinging was better than itching all the time. Better than ripping my skin apart with my withering, receeding, wavy and wrinkled barely-there fingernails. I tried petroleum jelly and non-petroleum jelly for moisturizer. I cringed as I touched my demonic hands. Nothing was helping.

Near the end of my last outbreak, I was regularly wearing black cotton gloves and black diabetic socks that I had cut hand holes in, over my arms. I didn’t go anywhere. My quality of life was diminishing. I had been in a depression for a while, for obvious reasons…but it kept getting worse and worse. I had lost myself. This ailment had taken me over. Who was I? Where was the bright, shining being I had once been? I was buried under oils, gloves and socks. I felt like I was starving myself. I couldn’t eat anything, touch anything, do anything. I was dying.

Finally one day, I woke up. I decided that I wasn’t going to be afraid anymore. That I wasn’t going to let this thing beat me. I scheduled another appointment with our General Practitioner. I asked for a blood test to check all of the vitamin levels they could run a test for. Everything came back normal.

I scheduled another allergist appointment. I went in and told them that I had stopped eating all of the foods that I had tested positive for. I had not eaten them for three months. I had seen no changes. I asked if they would provide a blood test. They agreed. I passed out on the second vile (I do that). When the blood test came back, it showed that I’d had a laundry list of FALSE positives on the original prick test. I was only really allergic to dust mites, Halibut and Kentucky Bluegrass. I cried, I was so happy. I could eat again!!!!

Next I decided that I was going to get a referral to another dermatologist. I told myself not to be afraid. I told myself that I would do whatever he told me to do. I wanted to live again. When I arrived at the dermatologist’s office, I peeled off my gloves and long sleeves and he prescribed me two different types of steroids, phototherapy and biotin (the vitamin found in Hair, Skin and Nail). I came home and put the crème on my hands. The next day, they stopped itching. The blisters and redness and itching and swelling were gone in three days. I had gotten the beast back under control. I celebrated with cheese and chicken and dancing, laughing and smiles. I told myself that it was time to live. I decided that I was going to keep myself happy. I was going to have theatre in my life again. I cut bangs on a whim. I started speaking my mind, not giving a shit what anyone thought. I started being ME, without fear. Without regret. My hands, so far, have responded to this emotional healing much better than to the steroids. I only put the steroids on when I see that I have a problem area that I am scratching unconsciously. It seems to keep the beast at bay, per-say, so that I can keep my quality of life flowing.

There was a period of my life in which I felt helpless. Like I couldn’t do ANYTHING. TOUCH anything. Well, now I am destined to do EVERYTHING, and that is what I’m doing. I am keeping myself happy. Ever since I decided that I was not going to let the negativity affect me anymore, no matter how my hands were behaving, I have noticed a tremendous difference in them. I believe that negative emotions are a killer. My husband says that he believes my “mind-body” link was broken. He says that we are all an experiment of the mind-body link. There is a part of the brain called the hypothalamus. “One of the most important functions of the hypothalamus is to link the nervous system to the endocrine system via the pituitary gland (hypophysis).” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypothalamus

The Hypothalamus is essentially what connects the mind to the body. We believe that emotions can cause a physical sickness in the body. Especially chronic negative emotions. My mind was packed with negative emotions. Why? Well, that’s a good question. As I have continued to learn and grow as a Mother, I have been forced to take a good look at myself. That’s what children are best at: showing you your flaws. You must pay attention to what they teach you, and I did. I didn’t like what I saw. I decided that I was going to clean myself up. I began the challenging work of getting rid of my past demons. There were some ugly ones hidden in there too: suicide, narcissism, critique, judgement, fear, worry. While my hands were weeping, I was too. I didn’t want to look at myself and my flaws. Who does? I knew that in order to heal myself, my mind, and my role as a strong and powerful Mother, woman and self, that I must bring each demon to the surface and sleigh it. This process was the most challenging thing I have ever achieved in my life. I did it. I survived. It was ugly. I was distraught. But I got through it. I slowly began replacing the things I didn’t like about myself with the positive energies of what was best about my Self. My Being. I embraced me…the true me, not the programmed me. I allowed the enlightened being within to surface and take control. No more pain body (Thanks Eckhart Tolle!). No more suffering. I dealt with my issues. I cleaned up my mind. My skin followed my mind on the healing journey.

I have read before that “our past is what defines us.” I can see the value and importance in this. One thing I have to remember, however, is that I am not the past me. I am the present ME. The past is in the past. I will no longer dwell on all of the negative. I will focus on the positive. For now, I am able to catch myself quickly when those negative thoughts and emotions begin to creep back in. I stop the beast in its tracks. I feel as if I have learned the basics of HOW to do this, for myself. I encourage you to do the same for yourself. Do you find yourself focusing on the negative. Do you sit and stare at your vulgar hands (or feet) on a regular basis? STOP IT. Try to move on, friend. Try with all your might. Carry on. LIVE! Heal your mind. Heal your body. Don’t live in fear. Don’t let the beast become you. You are a bright, powerful being. Take back control of your life. There is no cure in a bottle. Do what works for you. Stop focusing on the negative. Keep yourself in the right state of mind, fellow sufferers. I know it is HARD. I KNOW. I really, really do. I understand what it is like. Hang in there and keep on fighting. I firmly believe that if you make a real, conscious effort and decision to be happy that you will see a dramatic improvement in your skin.

My hands still have eczema on them.  There are currently still blisters and itchies…but they are tolerable.  I have stopped thinking about them.  Before, they were all I thought about.  Now, I have began painting my fingernails in ridiculously happy polishes. I am a silly, goofy, punny, dramatic and weird soul. I have grasped this. I am going to wear my “crazy” like a trophy. I am 34 years old and I have stopped dying my hair. I have grey/silver hairs. I will no longer live my life in fear of other people’s judgement. What a waste of life that would be/has been. I am living again. There is no turning back for me. I’ve been in that other deep, dark place. I don’t like it. It is damp and cold. It makes my fingers and their nails wither. I like it here where it is warm and sunny. I will take what life hands me, and not become distraught when it is not exactly a positive thing. I will heal. I will grow. I will learn. I will live. This is my current tactic for healing Dyshidrotic Eczema. Please wish me well on my journey. I wish you peace and happiness. Take care of yourself.

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A mental break: the Release of the Narcissistic Mother, Dyshidrotic Eczema, Aspbergers Syndrome and other tales of the Deep, Dark and Hollow

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I’m sorry for being away so long.

Yes, I’ve been away.

I have awakened from a depression.  A depression is something that no one else can help you with.  You can become medicated, sure…but I chose not to.  I made it.  I survived.  There were moments where I wanted to die.  I wished someone would run me off the road.  I hated myself.

I cut my own bangs on a whim the other day.  I always wanted to do that.  I cut them “Betty Page” style.  Betty Page looks a lot like Morticia Addams.  More about that later.

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My husband HATES it.

Your hair can (and should) be used as a canvas to show others who you are.  I didn’t cut my bangs because I hated myself, I just wanted something different.  Something to “wake me up.”  Something to force me to take better care of myself, because I wasn’t doing a very good job.

This is why “current hair fashion” and I never did get along very well. I adore a specific era of hair, but I don’t give a shit what is in style for 2015. I never really gave a shit what was in style my whole life, actually… and I like saying Shit every now and then. Shit! 🙂

I have always tried to be “me” I lost that part of myself for awhile. I became consumed with fear about what others thought about me. Now that part of me is back.

Does this mean I had some sort of mental break in my past? Yeah. Probably so. My Father did put the barrel of a 30-06 in his mouth and pull the trigger just before I graduated college.

I have JUST dealt with this, in my adulthood…11 years later.  I’ll tell this dramatic, backwoods, real life story to you as time goes on.

My husband is an amazing man. He’s really hard to be married to sometimes, because he can be brutally honest. He was just trying to heal me, but I didn’t see it at the time.  I thought he hated me and was just tolerating my presence.  I didn’t believe that he really loved me.  I didn’t think anyone loved me.  I have been programmed, you see, to believe that no one cares about me.  All thanks to the programming that my mother downloaded into me.  It is sort of not her fault, though.  I’m convinced, after talking to her older sister, that their Mother, or Father, perhaps both, had treated them this way their whole life.
“Fuck You!  FUCK YOU, Bitch!  I’m TIRED of the way you treat me!”  – loving words from my Mother, two years ago.

Yeah, that’s just an exert from the story that has been my life during this depression.  My Father (literally) blew his head off in our family’s detached garage.  I watched the hazmat crew clean him up through my parent’s bedroom window.  They told me not to, but I did.  I have seen the contents of the inside of my father’s entire head stuck to buckets and our family bicycles.  I watched two guys in white suits and face masks put him into trash bags.

He wanted to be cremated.  11 years later, he was still sitting on the shelf in my Mother’s living room.  HER living room.  I was sick of waiting.  We were supposed to scatter his ashes off of the Green River bridge.  But no one was talking about that.  In fact, no one EVER talked about it.  All that my Mother ever really said to me about the fact that her husband (whom I doubt she really loved— she just got “KNOCKED UP”(her words–that’s how I’m here) had blown his head off was that his entire head was gone and that there was a piece of his scalp with long grey hair attached to it sitting on the shoulder of his corpse.  This is how she found him.

Granted…yeah, I am glad I didn’t find him.  I know she is still in some state of grief, shock… but no one is helping her.  I tried, but she wouldn’t listen.  We weren’t supposed to talk about our FEELINGS.  She was tired of me trying to get her to deal with it.  To FORCE her to deal with it.  To talk about it.  No one ever really talked to me about it…I mean REALLY sat down and checked in on me, asked me how I was dealing with it.  No one.  People would offer, “If you ever need me….” or “If you ever want to talk, I’m there.”  I know that they meant it, but a person in that position does not ask for help or healing.

I was tired of waiting for her to be a good mother and talk to her daughters about it.  It is a Horrible situation, eh?

I did take drastic measures, however, to bring the fact that he was still in the urn and that no one was dealing with it into (literally) my own hands.  My family and I drove to my childhood home, took the key, opened up the house, picked up the yellow urn with a Robin sitting on a branch, walked out of the house, locked it, and buckled it up in a seatbelt in my car’s back seat.  I took it home.  Without permission.  Without saying anything.

As soon as we were home, I called my sister’s cell phone.  She didn’t answer, so I left a message.  She began furiously texting me.  I told her that this was not a conversation to be had via text, and that we needed to talk over the phone.  She replied, “Fine then, Don’t talk to me.”  (She was 22 yrs. old @ the time)  Now, she’s a Mother.

My sister said (through texts) that it was disrespectful of me to take the urn without asking our “Mama” for it.  I felt that I didn’t need to ask permission.  Those were the ashes of my Father.  I didn’t view “him” as a possession.

Next I called my Mother’s cell phone.  She was at work, so she didn’t answer.  Yes, I did plan to go to the house to take the urn while she wasn’t there.  DUH.  A vein might have popped in her head and she could have dropped dead over that.  Seriously, she has some major Anger/Anxiety issues.  (More horrible issues which she also programmed into me, and I have been trying to rid myself of).

Being a Mother, if you’re a good Mother, makes  you take a look at yourself.  I don’t mean in the mirror… I mean REALLY take a look at yourself.  Watching how you react to things.  Taking note when you get angry and asking yourself, “Why?  Why Did I react that way?”  Being HONEST with yourself.  To NOT be defensive about your REAL issues. TO DEAL WITH THEM AND FIX THEM.

I took the urn, because I wanted to deal with my Father’s Suicide.  I NEEDED to deal with it.  It had been too long.  I needed to move on.  I needed to let it go, before I could really live.

This is what I’ve been doing over the past two years.  I feel I have healed.  I mean REALLY healed myself this time…but then again, my Father did Have Bi-Polar Disorder.  I could be on one of my Happy benders.  My husband has called me crazy, but that’s okay, because I’ve called myself that.  I have been crazy.  I don’t want to be crazy.  I don’t take pride in being crazy.  I have been purging a HELL of a lot of CRAZY out of this mind of mine over the past two years, and it has been a boat ride through the swamp without a paddle.  I have worked HARD on my mind, and it needed it.
Damn.  What a ride I’ve been on.

Anyhow, to continue my story, I called my Mother’s Cell phone after I had brought my Father’s ashes into our house.  I intentionally called her when I knew she was working, so that I wouldn’t have to listen to whatever her reaction was.  I let her keep that anger to herself.  I predicted she’d be angry, and BOY OH BOY was I ever right about that.

“Hey.  I’m just calling to let you know that I have Daddy’s ashes.  Don’t worry, don’t freak out, I’m taking good care of them.  I just wanted to let you know where they were and that I have them.”

No, I did not scatter the ashes without my family.  Not all of them 😉

What I did do, before my Mother arrived, was to take a portion of the ashes that I felt was my right as his daughter.  I didn’t need permission to take them.  I still feel that way.  I’m not sorry that I took them.

In fact, it appeared as if someone had already had the same idea.  The lid had been popped off.  It had once been glued on.  The ashes were inside the little yellow ceramic urn (an urn that belonged to my Dad’s Mother).  They were not quite as I expected them to appear, however.  They were inside a thick mil plastic bag.  They had been stapled shut with some industrial stapler.  Yet, someone had poked a hole in the top of the bag, next to the staple.  GASP!  Someone had ALREADY “disturbed” the ashes.  Heal yeah.  (spelling intended), It didn’t have to be me.

SOMEONE had already poked around in the ashes.  Someone had made a silver dollar sized hole in the bag of ashes.  But it wasn’t me.  I felt even more justified in my next action:  I took some of the ashes (by shaking the urn).  I put them in an old metal coffee tin that I’d found at a thrift store.  Someone offered to buy that tin from me, long ago, when I was selling all kinds of things online.  I couldn’t take less than $10 for it, and no one wanted to pay that, so I had kept it.

My husband, who is a HUGE Big Lebowski fan, found it quite hilarious that I had chosen a coffee can.  I seriously did not connect my actions with the movie, but it may have been programmed into me to put ashes into a coffee container after seeing/hearing “The Big Lebowski” over and over during one of his repetitive aspie (and endearing term) benders.

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Aaron, my husband, likes to listen to things that he likes over…and over…and OVER…AND OVER again.  It gets to me sometimes, because one of my biggest pet peeves in life is repetition. I can’t stand it, mostly.  An example of some really great musical artists that he has played over and over are:  U2, Pearl Jam, Rebelution, and most currently Heartless Bastards.

Aaron, we’re about 99.9 percent certain, has Aspberger’s Syndrome.  He has not been formally diagnosed by a team of doctors, but he did befriend a doctor online who claimed that if he were his patient, he would say that he was on the high functioning end of the “disorder.”  He may not be “formally” diagnosed, but as his wife, I can say with CERTAINTY that he DOES have it.  There’s no question in my mind.  This is something that I’ll have to study more, so that I can be a better wife.  I’m working on understanding it daily.

Here is a quick description of Aspbergers, from someone with Aspbergers:

Asperger’s can not be cured, it is a genetic condition that can be worked on and mitigated, but can not be cured. Each person has it differently and reacts to the world differently, but here are some basics.

Asperger’s syndrome is, in it’s most basic form, Autism. Autism is broken into two types, Kanner’s and Asperger’s, with the break at the 70 IQ level. If your IQ is 70 or below you have Kanner’s Autism, if your IQ is 71 or above, you have Asperger’s autism. (it is a little more complicated than that in it’s break up, but for a beginner this is good)

The easiest way to describe Asperger’s syndrome to someone who has never heard of it is to describe it as a Social Autism. The person who has Asperger’s grew up not learning the social cues around him/her. The person does not, usually, understand subtle social cues that the normal person takes for granted. Things such as sarcasm, and body language that change the meaning of a statement, are not understood by the asperger person, and taken literally.

Asperger syndrome is also called “the little professor syndrome”

The Asperger type is usually very literal in what is stated, and what is understood. The normal person usually sees the asperger person as being emotion-less, though this is not true. Emotions are just kept very deep inside and not brought to the surface. The aspie also does not know what to do with another person who is experiencing emotions, and needs to be told what to do in these instances. Phrases like “I need you to hold me now” are very helpful” in a relationship, for the normal (NT) person to say to the aspie.

Aspies tend to like routines. Change is very difficult, and they will be slow to accept it.

Aspies will appear to lack empathy. As stated above, this is not due to lack of empathy, but a lack of knowledge of how to show it.

Aspies tend to have more of a formal use of words than the NT wold or have a formal style of speaking that is advanced for his or her age. For example, the aspie may use the word “beckon” instead of “call” or the word “return” instead of “come back.”

ASPIES TEND TO AVOID EYE CONTACT. This is not due to lying or being self conscious. The eyes are very difficult to look at, and cause mental anguish and pain in many aspies. They are unable to think of what they want to say, and look another in the eyes at the same time.

Aspies may have unusual facial expressions or body postures. They may be more formal in the way they stand, or just look out of place. Their facial features may not express the emotions that they are experiencing. They may not frown when they are sad, smile when happy, etc…

Many Aspies are pre-occupied with one or a few subjects of interest and learn everything there is to know about those subjects to the exclusion of all others. They may not want to discuss anything other than those subjects with anyone. When brought into a conversation, they will immediately take the conversation to their chosen subject of interest, and then talk about it non-stop. They will not notice that nobody else wants to discuss that subject.

Aspies tend to have heightened sensitivity and become overstimulated by loud noises, lights, or strong tastes or textures. They may only eat certain things, or order foods certain ways. They may not be able to work in rooms with florescent lighting due to the buzz or the flicker, even when nobody else notices. Many different things, for many different people.

 
Source(s): Aspie x 42 years.
Note:  Aaron does not completely fit into the mold of the above description.  More about that later, though.
Here’s another helpful link about Aspbergers:  https://prezi.com/po6hyevbwc9n/asperger-syndrome/
My Mother claimed that my husband had “messed up my mind”– but what she didn’t take the time to understand about me and the man I love is that he does have some behaviors that are difficult to deal with, because of Aspbergers.  I do not say this to make him feel bad, or to belittle him.  It’s just the truth.  Being the wife of someone with Aspbergers can be very difficult…especially when you have bottled up issues that you haven’t dealt with.  They will SEE those issues and they cannot help but make you aware of them.  They will have no empathy for you once you realize that they’re right, however.  You’re on your own.  I recommend, in retrospect, that you do not do it on your own.  Remember, I was programmed to believe that no one cared about me.  Therefore, I wouldn’t talk to any of my friends about what I was going through.  I had no one to listen to me about my struggles.  No Mother, No Father.  No one was checking in on me, on a regular basis just to ask “How are you?  How are things going? How are you feeling?” and to really mean it.  I do have friends.  I have collected a nice little set of strong women as my friends in my mid-thirties.  All of these friends, except for one, is a mother.  They have husbands and children and a family of their own that they are trying their best to figure out.  I didn’t want to burden them with my Mommy issues.  I had no Mother to check on me.  She thought it was my job, as her daughter, to check in on HER.  What my Mother has failed to see, after almost 60 years of life, is that she is my elder.  She is supposed to help to guide me.  She is my “Mother” but she is not a Mother.  She does not actually seem to care about what is happening in my life.  She is only concerned with herself.  She is the victim.  No one cares about her.  No one asks her about how she’s feeling.  She doesn’t have a Mother either.  Her mother, however, is dead.
Sure, I see that I’ve said the same things about myself that I’ve said about my Mother.  That’s part of the “crazy” problem we’ve got going on here, you see?  Am I crazy?  A book that I read once I had the thought that my Mother could be a Narcissist (Aaron had diagnosed her as such) was entitled, “ Youre Not CrazyIt’s Your Mother!: Understanding and Healing for Daughters of Narcissistic Mothers
The author, Danu Morrigan says that as the daughter of a Narcissistic Mother, you’ll most certainly ask yourself, “Am I the crazy one?”  She says that if you are able to ask yourself this, then you can’t be a full blown Narcissist….BUT you CAN have Narcissistic tendencies.

http://www.healingselfesteem.com/

http://www.adultchildofalcoholiclifecoach.com/

*Not all of what this lady says in the above video applies directly to my Mother.  My Mother is the “Ignoring” Narcissist.  But the “I don’t want to talk about that” portion of the conversation DID strongly apply to my situation.  She could call and complain about her miserable life and all of the negative things going on in her life for hours.  One time, during a cell phone “conversation” I timed how long she talked without a response from me.  The entire 20 minutes, she was complaining.  I connect with the video that I’ve shared here because I DID tell my Mother, “I am a WOMAN. ” She also bought me many things so that I could “Owe her.”  Classic Narcissist.  The whole, “Adult Children of Alcoholics” plug of her’s at the end?  Yeah, my Dad was an alcoholic too.

Great.  Yeah, that’s right.  One more issue.  One more level of crazy.  Remember, my Mother claimed that my husband had “messed up my mind.”

My mind seems to have plenty to choose from in its array of crazy .

When my husband met me, he knew that I had issues.  He knew that I had not dealt with my Father’s Suicide…at all.  He knew that I was a barrel of monkeys, per-say…that more issues might keep on rolling out of me, holding furry knuckled phalanges together.  He knew, but he didn’t know.  Neither did I.  (the little professor syndrome)  He was a bartender when I met him.  He enjoyed psychoanalyzing people over the bar.  He had a set of regulars who would come in and tell him their problems.  He actually is pretty damn good at helping people solve their issues…but he will PISS YOU OFF, because he’ll be brutally honest.  He is NOT always right, though, in his diagnosis of what your mind may be thinking at the time.  He just uses logic to deduce where your mind might be, and what it might be thinking.  It’s sort of a mind cuss, actually, because he’s mostly right…so even if you think he’s wrong, you’ll have to ask yourself if he’s right.  There were moments where I would be mad at him for being so smart.  There were moments where I just could not convince him that he was wrong, and that his deduction of where my mind was and what I was thinking was wrong.  Aaron has a very hard time reading emotions and feelings.  He just could not understand why I looked so miserable while I was depressed.  He had no empathy for me, either.  Well, almost none.

Because of all of this, I was left thinking, at times, that I was just an overall shit-bag.  He kept telling me that I liked wallowing in my own misery, just like my Mother.  That I didn’t want to be happy.  I kept asking myself if that was true.  If I was just “Acting out a script” that was programmed into me by my Mother.  Was I just acting like her?  As I reflect on it now, I can say that there were times when I was, and times when I wasn’t.  There were times when I was only depressed and not even thinking about her…but then Aaron would say that I was acting like her.

I was overwhelmed with being a Mother to two.  I was overwhelmed with trying to figure out how to be a good mother to them.  I had no strong female role model in my life to mold myself after when it came to being a Mother.  I often envy other Mothers who have an awesome, supportive and loving Mother of their own.  I don’t know what that is like.  I can imagine it, sure, but I have not lived it.  I am mad about that, off and on.  My Mother (I usually refer to her as Sarah these days) is absent from my life because of my choice to keep her out of it.  That’s my fault, sure.  I told her that I never wanted to talk to her again, and I meant it.  She hurt me to my core.  No Mother should do that to her daughter.  Especially without a breath of regret.

Sometimes Aaron says I’m just like her when I mope and complain.  I try not to complain, I really do.  I’m not writing this blog to feel sorry for myself.  I’m just telling my story.  I’m sharing my feelings.

My Mother once said to Aaron, “I’ve had a shitty life.”  Sometimes he brings up that statement when I start complaining about the negative things in my life.  It pisses me off when he does it, but I must say that a much better approach to correcting my focus on the negative might be to say something with more empathy like, “Wendy, please just try to focus on the good.” instead of “Wendy, you sound just like your Mother.”

“When you don’t know what it is you’re fighting, you can’t possibly know how to deal with it.  I wrestled for years with some unknown presence that seemed to affect every aspect of our relationship.  Those years in the dark, left me with feelings of self-doubt, insecurity, and total worthlessness.  I cried many nights, thinking it was something awful about me that caused my husband’s rejection, when in reality, it was AS.”  Source

Aspies.  They’re the smartest, deepest people you’ll ever meet.  When I met Aaron, I was smitten by how completely different he was.  One of the first things he told me on our first date was that women told him he was “too deep.”  My response to him at the time was, “How can you be TOO deep?”   Aaron didn’t give a SHIT about what anyone thought about him(and still doesn’t), and he knew himself better than anyone I had ever met in my life.  He was eons ahead of me when it came to knowing myself, and I knew it.  I didn’t care, though…he was taller than me, he was intriguing, he was weird and dark and handsome and had a U2 tattoo on his chest.  There was no stopping our romance.  From the moment I met Aaron, things continue to happen in my life that are synchronistic about our relationship.  Actually, the night I met Aaron, U2 came on the jukebox at the pool hall/bar where we met.  I can’t recall whether or not I played that song, but chances were good that I had.  I used to pump that machine full of quarters so that it would play songs that I liked so that I could dance and sing and play pool.  When I met Aaron, I was wearing a little red, 100% cotton, ruffled mini skirt.  My “shirt” of choice was a lace, black, spaghetti strapped midriff that was see through on the back and at the waist.  I was out shopping, I suppose 😉 I find it worth mentioning  that the bar in which I met Aaron had a corner room display of Betty Page prints hanging on the wall 😉

I was a virgin when I met Aaron.  Yeah, that’s right.  I was a 22 year old virgin.  This was mostly because my Mother had terrified me about sex.  She made it sound disgusting and degrading.  There was never any “Making love” to be had.  It was all nasty, nasty intercourse.  You were a whore if you had sex. This caused me MANY *almost* relationships of past.  I didn’t understand why I never had a boyfriend before Aaron, either.  I sure do see why now, though.  I was afraid of sex because of my Mother.  This made me VERY sexually awkward.  VERY.

My soulmate found me at just the right time in my life.  I learned how to make love. 🙂

Anyhow, I’m tired of writing for today.  I just started typing out my story this evening.  It came almost out of nowhere, but I’m finding as I write it that it is very therapeutic for me.  I am telling the story of my struggles.  I am writing the story to help myself, and to help others too.  One of the characteristics that I know about myself is that I “like to help.”  Sometimes I can try to help to the point of hurting.  I hope I don’t hurt you, dear reader.  😉

In my next blog, I will continue the story about what happened after my Mother received my voice mail message about the urn.  Her reaction convinced me that she is indeed a Narcissist.

Later, I’ll tell you about my hands.  My oozing, weeping, cracking bleeding hands.  The hands I wielded during my time of turmoil.  If you’d like a little background to that tale, go ahead and read my first blog entry about it at: https://thebutterchurn.wordpress.com/2013/10/15/dyshidrotic-eczema-a-malady-of-concerning-cause-and-effect/

Later, I’ll ramble some more. I’ll share some more about the hurtful words that my own Mother said to me that continue to circulate around in my mind. I’ll talk a bit more about what it is like to be the wife of a husband with Aspbergers. I’ll reminisce about what it has been like to be a Mother who can’t use her hands. I’ll heal some more, through writing.

I’ll heal that hurt, but I won’t deal it back.

betty pageLOL.

A True Journey of Self Healing and Dyshidrotic Eczema: Honest Answers.

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heal
Heal Yesterday, Live Today.

A blinking cursor begs for me to tell my story. A story of strength. A story of endurance. A story of hands wounded, split apart, torn and bleeding. Our hands interact with the world around us. They touch, caress and hold. They protect us. They interact on behalf of our thoughts, pecking words onto a screen of light.
A number of times, in the comment section of a past blog, Dyshidrotic Eczema: A Malady of Concerning Cause and Effect , I have promised to speak more on the matter. I was waiting for some sort of great unveiling to emerge as I continuously used myself as a test subject for the ailment that continues to re-emerge. To itch with the force of fire. To bleed. To ooze. For a while, I was positive that an allergy to cow’s milk was the cause of one of the most trialing experiences of my adult life. Now, I think I’ve got it figured out again, for myself at least. There is no cure for this ailment I have deemed “The beast.” A beast indeed. I am going to write the truth. I am not going to sugar coat my thoughts. I am going to tell you, straight up, what I have discovered to be the direct cause of DE: A physical sign of mental distress. Not a very encouraging diagnosis, is it? You’ve begged your doctors for an answer. Unless you’ve been to a psychiatrist, I fear the answer will never be found with traditional, prescription writing medicine. The medicine of the mind is what you need, dear friend. If you’re like me, your support system may be lacking due to confusion and misunderstanding. A lack of sympathy, of empathy may exude from those around you. Staring glances that can’t make eye contact may follow you out in public. Hold tight, dear friend… I may not know you, but I am with you. I am no doctor. I am no psychiatrist. But I have been and still am a fellow sufferer. I’ve used myself as a sort of “test subject”…working to find a natural cure. To dismiss modern medicine and get down to the nitty, gritty root system of the beast. I wish to uproot it for both myself and for you. So let’s get to it.
Have you recently had a life changing event? I have. Several…within the past year. I have been on the fast track to self-discovery. Our youngest son, Harper Tribann will turn one this month. Within the first year of his life, I had an outbreak of Dyshidrotic Eczema so bad that it was physically painful for me hold him. My fingers broke open and bled while I changed his diaper. Shortly thereafter, we explored and then discovered truth together that my husband, Aaron, has Aspergers. A few months later, my Mother essentially disowned me and told me that the Daddy I’d known my whole life was not my actual Father. Oh, and let’s not forget that the house that Aaron and I had bought together, our one and only house, was also burned to the ground in an accidental fire caused (but denied by), by our last set of renters.
Stress? You’d better believe it. Need I explain the intense stress of each situation above? More like EXTREME STRESS. Test the strength of your mind sort of stress. Which brings about my next thought: Mental Weakness. The boundaries of the mind I once knew have shifted since I exited what my husband deems, The Matrix. BREAKING AN ADDICTION to The world of technology that we live in is NO JOKE. We dropped out. We respectfully declined to play, play along. We dumped the internet off of our cell phones, moved in with a family member, shut down my successful photography business and entered into what my friend Carr!e calls “early retirement.” Jumping between the ships of what everyone else is doing (following the program) and what should be done is hard to do. A few friends of ours recently asked advice on how to do what we’re doing. How do you make the break, with children in tow? How do you stop working your life away for another’s profit? How do you become untethered to your mobile device? How do you detach yourself, your actual self, from your avatar? How do you leave Facebook, when communication has shifted from actual interaction, from good ole’ face to face conversation? How do you allow yourself to feel lonely as you shift away from constant instant gratification through likes, shares and comments. You are not your avatar. Separate the two and be free.
The cure? The answer? How do I heal these grotesque monster gloves for the public eye? Stop worrying about what everyone else thinks of your hands and start there. You are suffering. It is evident. Surely those who are gawking at and questioning the state of your hands can show you a bit of empathy and compassion, right? WRONG. Most of them, I fear—actually lack the ability. We are becoming a world consumed with and addicted to the internet. We are weakening our link to food, to nature. We are dangerously materialistic. We are forgetting that we still poop and pee just like the bears in the woods. We are becoming de-humanized…and I am SCARED to be a part of what I see. My family and I are taking a step backward toward progress.

My dear friend Carr!e is also brutally honest. I love that about her. She recently told me that I’m crotchety when it comes to technology. She knows me well. I do not have a cell phone that is internet capable. I have a dumb phone. Part of the marketing name behind “Smart Phone”, I’m sure. Not good for business…oh yeah, what business? 😉

Fellow sufferers, my advice to you is to be strong. Do you have unresolved issues about your childhood as an adult? Did the feces hit the swamp buggy boat’s fan? Are you tethered to your smart phone? Do you ignore or dismiss your children because you’re on a social media site or answering an email? Are you addicted to your phone and the internet? Are you truly living? Do you sometimes feel like a robot? Are you happy? Are you keeping yourself from being happy? These are all questions I have asked myself, step by step, during the healing process of both my hands AND my mind.
I have also begun, at age 33, my spiritual journey. A much needed path, full of light. I’m studying books about herbal remedy and medicine. I’m learning how to go back, way back…deep into the compressed soil of our past. To a time where we weren’t prescribed powerful, sometimes mind bending medication to deal with the world around us…

Create and use a Plantain Poultice. This is the best natural remedy I have found (using myself as a test subject) for Dyshidrotic Eczema. It presented itself to me almost instantly once I began to study plant medicine.

1. Pull one leaf out of the plant, pulling from the base of the plant (so that you’ve pulled the entire leaf all the way to the root).
2. Rinse the leaf.
3. Chew it like Bugs Bunny eats a carrot, keeping in your mouth (not swallowing) to make a spit poultice.
4. Once you’ve chewed the end of the plantain “carrot”, spit it onto the area that is itching or causing you the most pain…or have your lover do it 😉
5. Yes, it will burn. It is okay. You’ve dealt with much worse pain during this journey, right? Sit still with the poultice on your wound and imagine that the pain, the sting that you’re feeling is due to the fact that the plant is pulling the poison (the cause of the beast) out of your skin. It is ejecting the problem. It is cleansing you, healing you. Let it sit until the burn has stopped or the spit has dried.
6. Your hands/fingers will appear to have been dipped in the dirt. They should now appear to be brown instead of red. This, I believe, is because the plantain has helped your skin to enter the fast track of healing. For instance: You know how a scratch on your leg or arm is all red and swollen before it scabs up and turns brown? Plantain, (I maintain this theory), is a sort of step-skipper when it comes to waiting for the scab.
7. Don’t scratch the itch. Don’t. Mind over matter, my friend. Do you want to heal or not?
8. Let the scab fall off on its own. Do not pick it off, even though it looks like you have dirt on your hands. Do you want people to think you’ve been gardening or that you have a contagious disease? Why do you care what they think when it comes to healing yourself? (These are not prodding attacks at “you”, reader. These are all questions that I ask myself when I think about itching or picking. Create your own, or use mine. Itch and scratch and walk away from the path to healing. Mind over matter. Strength.
Banana peels are great for the morning guilty itch. I don’t know about you, but the morning is prime time for any problem areas that I have on my hands to itch. Both of our sons love to eat bananas for breakfast. One morning I took the inside of one of their banana peels to itch the end of my thumb (we all disappoint ourselves at times, don’t we?) The banana peel also turned my thumb a dirty, earthy brown color…like I had been digging in the Earth. It is as if something was telling me to get back outside and get my hands dirty, huh? Many hugs and smiles to a few recent friends of mine who put the idea into my head 😉
Stretch. We should all do this more often. Stretching without the fear of how silly we look (another problem I’ve been freeing myself of recently, I fear…) is essential. Work it OUT! Get that stress out? Feel like you can’t roll your neck around in one direction anymore because it is all tight and uncomfortable? Keep rolling it! Work it out! Trust yourself to heal yourself.
Be in the now.
Let go.
Find time for yourself.
Heal yourself.

The rest of my advice to you is written above, in bold. Each holds its own explanation within your own life. Search for the meaning of each. Act upon the truths that you find. Communicate your feelings with those you love. Grow. Strengthen. Heal.