It’s 2017 y’all!!!

Fireworks of various colors bursting against a black background

So we’re a little over a week now into the new year! How has it been treating you all?! I for one (probably like most people) was happy to see 2016 go. It’s been a rough year for sure, but I’ve learned a lot and was pushed out of my comfort zone many times, forcing me to grow.

The last week of 2016 was a serious battle for me with my skin. It was almost like I had to go through just another round of torture right before the year ended or something. It was like the last symbolic gesture of “getting rid of the old to let in the new”, and believe me I got rid of a lot of old shed skin within that week. I’m still not sure what brought it on, and by now, almost 5 years in I’ve given up on trying to figure out what causes my flares. I’ve come to terms with the fact that I will flare when it’s time to go through a healing crisis and I’ve just gotta hold tight & soldier on. I’m sure me digging into my feet and breaking the skin days before didn’t help. We all know how the itch can get the better of us and then next thing you know we’re oh-so satisfied but a bloody, weeping oozy mess. Then comes the guilt for tearing apart the fragile skin and wishing we had more discipline. 😔 It could’ve also been that I had a double portion of coconut Thai soup when I went out to dinner days before. I like to keep my diet more high carb low fat vegan, and that might have been just too much fatty goodness at once. Either way the flare started to come on and it lasted for a little over a week through Christmas.

I finally found relief the day after New Years. That week + was truly the worst, I found myself irritated from the knees down, oozing and sticking to my sheets at night. That awful smell of ooze was coming out again and the scent gave me terrible flash backs. The intense pain returned too, leaving me not wanting to move. It’s been especially tough these days because I’ve become my mother’s caretaker as she’s had 3 spinal surgeries and pretty much learning to walk again on numb & painful legs in need of repair. So with both of us down that particular week it was definitely a challenge. It got to the point where I couldn’t even walk outside to check the mail and dump the trash, our groceries were dwindling and I was holding out until I could at least wrap my feet in paper towel to get out the house to drive to the store. I was hobbling around like in the old days of TSW, strategically counting my steps trying to not overexert myself. Through all the tears my mom kept encouraging me telling me “remember you’ve been through worse, if you can get through it then you can get through it now” “don’t give up, God has brought you too far to leave you now!” Every time I’d be in a terrible state when I was in New York, I’d call my mom and she’d lift me up, she’d listen to my crying and give me something inspirational to hold on to. It’s crazy how the tables have turned that now she needs my help more than ever and all of the encouragement that she instilled in me over the years I am now reminding her of and keeping her inspired as she gets through this time of struggle in her own health.

I got through this last trial of 2016 with encouragement from my mom, smiles and videos from my nieces, lots of rest, healing foods, supplements  (extra probiotics and proteolytic enzymes) and essential oils. I stayed as hydrated as I could and kept my meals simple and yes, always vegan 😉. I used many essential oil remedies to get me through: the morphine bomb blend for pain and inflammation- a mix of lemongrass, marjoram, frankincense (added oregano oil for antibacterial/antibiotic effects) all in a veggie capsule (4 drops each) , I also used this same morphine bomb blend in a roller ball that I applied to the soles of my feet, I also applied frankincense by itself to take down the inflammation at night on the soles of my feet, I used an allergy capsule (for the itch) remedy of lemon, lavender and peppermint essential oils as well as diffusing these oils (4 drops each for the capsule and for the diffuser), I used oregano by itself for the oozing and took this every 6-8 hours (4 drops as well), later as the oozing and dried and crusted I started to apply a mix I did of helichrysum, frankincense, jojoba and coconut oil on my legs and feet. It was 2 drops of each EO to one large spoonful of each coconut & jojoba oils. This is pretty powerful as the helichrysum is super essential for skin renewal & localizing the blood flow to the skin and the frankincense is antioxidant rich and takes down the inflammation. I’ve found this mix to be very beneficial to my skin repairing through this flare and I’m going to continue to concentrate this mix on my feet for weeks to come. I didn’t take pictures throughout this flare, honestly I was just over it. I had no energy to document, although now I wish I had so you can see the day to day progression. The picture below is a week after my skin finally started feeling somewhat bearable (the day that I ventured out to go get groceries after literally rationing food).

*If you’d like more info on the essential oils that I use just send me an email at . You can check out the oils themselves at my mothers website, and by purchasing you can help support the growth of our small family business!

This past week, on Wednesday to be exact we woke up to find our passenger side window smashed in. We weren’t the only ones who had this happen to us, 40+ other cars got hit in my apartment complex too! It was truly unbelievable that people can be this cruel, just going around smashing in innocent folks windows just for the heck of it. After the week that I had with just battling this flare, this was the last thing I wanted to deal with. All of these consecutive trials could’ve really broke me, but my mom and I stayed strong and kept our faith that better things are on the horizon. We have to remember to stay faithful and believing that our struggles will turn into joy, that our test will be our testimony. I hate to see my mother like this, in the pain that she’s feeling, but I know that God has brought us so far, and He won’t leave us now. I know that we must praise Him even in the middle of the trials and tribulations when it is the hardest, when we must dig so deep in our faith. That’s when we express true strength, when we don’t let our situations make us crumble into a million pieces. I listened to this sermon by Pastor John Gray the day our car got smashed in. I really felt like I had enough, and that I was tired of losing and was in need of a win. It really got my mind right to keep on pushing, and to keep giving praise and keeping the faith. To keep staying positive and smiling when I should be clearly bawling my eyes out! I hope that it can give you some encouragement too! We will all get through the struggles that come our way, whether they be physical, emotional or mental. “It’s not over!” and things will look up, just keep believing! I knew that my skin would get better like in the pic above, I just had to keep on believing it. Now I know that I’ve put that in the past, I literally left it in 2016, and now I know that this year has nothing but the end of my healing journey. I’ve been feeling like I’ve been at 90% for the longest and I KNOW that in 2017 I’ll reach the full 100%!

Stay strong warriors!

❤ Jen

2 thoughts on “It’s 2017 y’all!!!

  1. You are stronger than you know. You are more resilient than you know. Hear those words like the wind in the trees. It is your song. Please do not be deterred by the pain. Forward on, Jennifer. You have a quiet strength that you will soon (sooner than you think) realize is a loud trumpeting roar. Dwell not in your body. Carry your spirit triumphantly into every day. You’ve got this, my girl. You’ve got this.

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