I’ve been sick. In the past year I’ve really been sick.
I’ve had pneumonia in the dead of summer. With a 102 fever, chills, sweats, body aches. I cried one night because I was in so much pain. I wondered if my pain tolerance was low, or if I really was just incredibly sick.
I’ve had pityriasis rosea. Generally a harmless rash, but for some people, the rash itches. I became part of that lucky group of people. For many months I had these bumps all over my skin that itched, that I couldn’t cure, that I couldn’t diagnose. Over time, it too faded, and the suffering along with it.
Not this time. This time, I have scabies. A mite that burrows in your skin, lays eggs, and leaves debris (feces if you couldn’t catch on). The side effect is a heinous, extraordinarily all-consuming itch that will, over the course of their stay, drive you into insanity. I fell into a depression, I no longer felt comfortable in my own skin. It is called scabies because you itch it so hard and so much that scabs form and leave scars.
The treatment? A carcinogenic insecticide cream you put all over your body. Over the course of a month it kills the mites and hopefully eggs, leaving debris in your skin that STILL makes you insanely itchy for a whole month after. That is if it works.
I am in the healing phase right now. I am writing this to remind myself–this too shall pass. The scars will fade, and with them the memory of the itch. What seems like the world now, is only a learning experience, something that makes you stronger. So, future me, congratulations on being stronger, wiser, and healthier.