Since a recent editorial about my suffering of Rosacea, I had an overwhelming response from other women who are suffering from it too asking me to share my tips of how I recovered from such a soul-destroying condition.
Surveys performed by the National Rosacea Society showed that nearly 70 per cent of people with rosacea have lower self-confidence and self-esteem, and 41 per cent reported that it had caused them to avoid public contact or cancel social engagements. Among those with severe symptoms, nearly 70 per cent said the disorder had adversely affected their professional interactions, and nearly 30 per cent said they had even missed work because of their condition. I can totally relate to them all.
Battling with Rosacea for 13 years was what made me make drastic life changes. Rosacea started to appear on my nose and cheeks along with a glowing red complexion. I was a busy self-employed hairdresser standing in front of the mirror for sometimes 10 hours a day, and it was killing my confidence. Before my outbreak, I had good skin, very easy to maintain and I never suffered from acne in my growing up years, then here at 26, I had a permanent bright red nose and chin that would more often than not be covered in white pimples that would appear from nowhere randomly throughout the day.
I remember between each client running to the toilet and applying more cover-up makeup as best I could, but this just made it worse.
I spent a fortune on so many products to try and hide the redness, but because my face felt hot and the atmosphere I worked in was dry within minutes, the makeup would look all caked and cracked. I was not a natural at applying makeup and the whole thing just drew more attention to my face and condition.
Clients and friends began to ask about my skin, and I had no clue how to answer them as I had no idea what was happening myself. I remember going to bed each night and praying I would wake up in the morning, and it would be gone but no. Every morning I would look in the mirror and instantly feel down because it was staring right back at me.
I started to do a lot of research on the internet to see if I could get any clues and that’s when I discovered it was a form of Rosacea even though all the symptoms was not the same as mine, the look and placement on the face resembled mine. The hardest thing to read was that there was said to be no known cure or real solid answers to what causes Rosacea. I felt devastated.
The sites I researched gave tips on what might help the condition, and one of the things was laser treatment, so my husband bought me ten very expensive sessions. I was so hopeful that this could be the cure but after my ten sessions, I didn’t notice any difference at all. My husband could clearly see how soul destroying this condition was for me, and I remember asking him how he could be with me looking the way I did? It really was starting to shatter my confidence. As you know when you get your hair done at the hairdressers most of the communication is done through the mirror, but I remember not looking in the mirror at all. In fact looking back I never looked at myself at all through my thirties and started to check all my haircuts by coming around to the front of the client and if I caught a glance of myself, I hated it.
I decided to look into the holistic approach, and someone mentioned a Chinese doctor, so I immediately booked an appointment. I had a consultation and he prescribed me lots of herbs to drink as he said I was holding a lot of fire in my stomach that could be showing through the Rosacea and the herbs would help me internally. I must have spent over a thousand pounds or more on Chinese medicine over a course of a year to no avail, but one thing I did take from it was about me having to much heat in my belly as I noticed my digestion was slow, and I often became bloated.
After another lot of money down the drain, I was getting desperate even a little obsessed with how I could understand this disease. I began to research diet and Rosacea and here you will find that spicy food can aggravate the condition. I thought the food I ate was healthy, but I did like spicy foods and took the researchers advice and tried eating more alkaline foods. With these dietary changes, I did notice that my digestive system began to work more efficiently, and other little signs like the feeling of bloating after eating weren’t so intense, but, unfortunately, my bright red face, pimply nose, and chin still glowed on while inside I was becoming desperate.
If you are reading this, you may resonate with the feelings I am describing, and there is no getting away from it Rosacea can be soul destroying and it became my daily battle of trying to hide the redness, itching, heat and the constant feeling like I had things crawling under my skin.
Sadly my battle went on for years and along with laser, makeup, Chinese doctors, creams lotions and potions, the only place I seemed happiest was at work (as long as I didn’t catch myself in the mirror). I would become so absorbed in my job, (workaholic) hiding behind my smile and it became my escape. But this was not the case outside my work. I was stressed, my body so tense I was constantly trying to figure out and find my cure. I became so unhappy and started to take it out on those close to me. I found it hard to relax and switch off. It affected my sleep, I became angry and hard to live with.
When I was 32, I fell pregnant and under my friend’s persuasion, she convinced me to join her at antenatal yoga class. I had heard about yoga through clients but this my first experience. I was five months pregnant and still working flat out. The teacher had us perch on softballs and guided us to breathe and for the first time in my life. I noticed my breath and body in a way I had never felt before. Our teacher guided us through some stretches and once again finished with conscious breathing, and I remember after just a few rounds feeling like my body had come off guard, and my mind stopped chattering I left feeling lighter and high on my breath. I wanted MORE!
After class, I felt different, grounded and calmer than I had felt in a very long time. I continued yoga classed until our daughter was born and during that period I started to feel different about myslef. The few moments spent breathing I felt my mind and body respond in a way I had never felt before, but it didn’t take long after those classes to start slipping back into my crazy, chaotic, busy world.
Those first yoga classes began to get me curious about myself, in fact, it got me noticing myself, and I started to recreate the breathing exercises to feel the calm I felt after the classes and found that some days my skin would not look so angry. It was still there, but there was the very odd day when it seemed a little calmer and not so itchy.
After the birth of my daughter, things did take a bit of a turn for me. I remember being sat in the back of the car holding my 8-week old baby looking out of the window and feeling nothing. Everything just seemed dull and grey in my world. I was quite an overwhelming feeling, my stress levels were high as my husband couldn’t do a thing right in my eyes and once again my skin was angry I felt all over the place emotionally, so I immediately called my midwife.
She was fantastic and came the next day, and I explained my symptoms, and she told me I was suffering from postnatal depression. I was so shocked hearing that and also frightened that I was going to lose it. I had heard a lot about depression and was quite surprised to be diagnosed with it myself.
It looked like I had it all. Nice house, car, and business, new baby all that looked perfect from the outside but inside I was suffering, and I was suffering badly.
You see when I was 25 my dad got killed in a car crash. I saw him Thursday, and he died on Friday. I was 25 and loving life. I had a fab relationship with my dad, my mum, not so good so when he lost his life, it left a huge hole in mine. Now no one knows how to get over such a thing and for me, I went into survival mode. I was a busy hairdresser had lots of friends and a very busy social life but in that one instant, everything changed. No one knew how to talk to me when I entered a room, people would fall silent. My clients would sit in silence, it was tough. So stuffing everything deep inside I tried to resume my old life.
I believe this was my Rosacea it was my past grief, anger, sadness, loneliness I felt from the loss of my dad and other experiences stuffed deep inside.
What is interesting when you are suffering, and in denial is that other parts of your life have to compensate to keep it well hidden. I was great at blaming and taking it all out on my husband and looking back my skin was showing me the signs, that I choose to ignore for so many years.
I know you may be reading this in hope that I was going to reveal some magic solution, wonder cream or drug that will erase Rosacea forever but I am sorry there is no wonder drug or treatment. My Rosacea relief was me taking notice of myself. I was my cure and slowly I raised my hands and surrendered to healing myself from the inside out.
We all have a past, things and emotions we have experienced, and we suppress them over the years. Frustrations and hurt maybe a loss of a loved one, divorce, abuse, addition that we hold on to within our bodies.
I am a huge believer that the emotions, resentment, anger, are stored in the body and reveal themselves in the physical body of maybe headaches, constipation, neck/shoulder pain, insomnia, overeating, depression, anxiety, skin problems and in some cases disease.
For the last 7 years, I have been flushed face free. When I was caught up in my 13 years of suffering, I never thought that day would come, and people now comment on how good my skin looks. I changed my diet. I got help to release my grief, anger and past experiences and started to take a keen interest in myself.
The body has incredible healing powers, but we have to give a helping hand by being true to ourselves and facing the emotions and experiences that keep us suffering and stuck. We need to stop hiding behind smiles, tune in and deal with it.
I have learnt to listen to my body and face issues through my yoga and meditation practice to release, let go and dissolve old emotions and anxieties that were holding me back and stopping me living the fulfilling life I wanted. When we take the time to connect the whole self-reaps the rewards.
Rosacea I believe is suppressed anger/resentment and other emotions that create heat in the body and in my case resulted in my red, irritated face. From that first yoga class 15 years ago was the day I got hooked. It has opened up my world and gave me the courage and confidence to indulge in myself and did what no longer serves me.
It is no way an overnight process, and not an easy process at times by any means. We experience and hold on to so much but reaching out and yoga is a fantastic place to start.
With the right teacher and guidance, yoga will help you release, and we are slowly brought into the present moment and to what matters to us and our lives. This, believe me, is such a great place to live from and with self-dedication, self-observation and just offering time to yourself you can free yourself. Opening you up to new experiences and opportunities leaving you free from pain and suffering to get the best and most out of this incredible life journey.
When things are going great BOOM, Life throws you a curveball, and you get thrown off your path. But yoga, meditation, and my dedication to self-care what keeps me living a balanced lifestyle, I feel confident and clear about where I am going which is far from where I was through all the years I suffered. I have released that red face and my battle is over, and it can be for you too it takes honesty, courage, and dedication.
There is a lesson in everything we experience as hard it is we must learn to trust and learn to listen, release and let it go as all that we need to learn is right here inside. We are our FREEDOM.
My transformation guided me to change my career and share my knowledge through yoga, mindfulness, and meditation, and I love teaching at my Yoga Retreat here in Turkey. I have clear skin 99% of the time and love offering and sharing to all the wonderful students I get to guide and I witness some incredible transformations along the way.
To read more about my journey, you can download my ebook ‘Tune into yourself or suffer’ Free from my website.
It takes you deeper into the things I did and does to this present day to keep me living a balanced, happy Rosacea free life. It has some great breathing exercises that I use, yoga ideas, sleep tips, diet ideas and more that will help you tune in and begin fading your face and the causes and start rocking your life.
I also offer a Free 30 minute call with no obligation at all. Why? because when I was suffering in my mid-twenties so few had even heard of Rosacea. Not like now the market is huge with products advertising Rosacea. Product ranges, creams it has become a money-making market as they pray on desperate people.
I really would have loved to find a person like me that had lived through it and is now sharing to help others. Just to talk about how I felt and how Rosacea made me feel would have been amazing. So that is why I offer it. In fact, after just one call I have had people writing to me saying how much it helped them see Rosacea for what it truly is and was excited about there healing journey to taking back there life and fading there face.
If you would like to have a conversation with me? I would LOVE to 'hear' from you.