The other day I was reconnecting with a former co-worker. We had a really nice time catching up and work, people we know, careers and such.
Nice time. Good food. Good talk.
Then, towards the end of the lunch my friend mentioned that my vitiligo was looking better.
And it surprised me a bit. It’s something I hear everyone once in a while and I usually assume that the person is just being nice. It’s just a way of being a friend, being supportive and I appreciate that. I appreciate that very much and still I suspect that perhaps someone is lying, just to be nice and I discount it.
I discount the compliment because I know the facts. I know that in fact, over the last 3 years my vitiligo has spread. Its in more places and bigger spots.
I have experienced repigmentation on my hands and face but it has not been at all complete. And on the whole I have less pigment overall.
That’s the truth. That is reality. That is what I know to be factually true.
And so when someone tells me that things look better I thing, well thanks, but let’s move on.
But this time I considered something else might also be true. Yes, when you get a compliment on your skin its your friend being your friend. Yes, it’s your friend just being nice. Yes, it’s your friend supporting you.
But maybe my friend really things it’s true.
Maybe she thought I looked better than my friend remembered and though my vitiligo is in fact worse, it entirely true so say, it looks better.
It was said because it was sincerely thought to be true. Not just being nice.
As I consider this possibility, I think through the past few years of my life and I recognize changes. Big changes in how I see myself, in how I behave, in how I carry myself, in how I talk about myself.
There is less hesitation, less doubt, less holding back.
There is more confidence, more decisions, more moving forward.
Pressing through the things that I am afraid of has been wonderful. Facing fear has lead to a better day, each day.
And maybe that’s what my friend saw the other day: me, different from what was remembered a few years ago, me more confident.
What does that look like? Maybe it looks like my vitiligo is better, even when it’s not.
Betty Jo says
I had probably the worst vitiligo I have ever seen. About 1/2 of my face had color and another spot on the center of my chest. All the rest of my body was free of color. It went very fast for me – maybe no more than 3 months. I went to the Mayo Clinic only because I live 25 miles from it. Yes, they are the greatest clinic in the world. I met with a dermatologist who immediately knew it was vitiligo. He explained to me that the only thing that could help me was narrow band B light therapy. There is no medicine to take just expose my skin to the light which is identical to a stand up tanning booth. To mark my improvement, I needed to have pictures taken but it was my choice. I immediately agreed since anything that could be done to help me was what I wanted. If you have never went to the Mayo Clinic, these people are the ultimate in kind, they know how to talk to their patients and treat them like gold. I began my light treatments in the end of June. They start at 3 seconds and move up 3 seconds at a time. My face only gets 28 seconds so it does not age the skin. Today, December 20th after 72 sessions, I have 90% of my color back. I know there are a couple spots on my face left but nothing noticable. I met with my doctor again after 60 sessions and asked him what maintenance would be. He told me once it comes back it does not go away again. There is no maintenance. I am up to 4 minutes now and could have as long as 18 months total but worth every second I spend there. Skin without color is so dangerous because you have such a huge chance of getting skin cancer. I cannot imagine sitting back and not doing the treatments. When people tell me I look better, it is because I do look better. These light booths can also be put in your home to do the treatments so there is really no reason not to do the therapy. Insurance would have covered one for my home but since I am just down the road from the doctor, I might just as well have it done there. Just remember when talking with your doctor to have narrow band B light therapy. The other ones do not work at all like this one does. Also, feet and hands are the last thing to get color. Both have color now. My feet are just starting to fill in but the excitement when I saw the first brown dots was hard to explain. Don’t cover it up, get it treated.
hi…i just started cabin phototheraphy. is it true that it migh get skin cancer by doing this treatment?. i am suggested to do it 2 times a week for 6 months.
appreciate your view on this.