At the beginning of this year I had a terrible rash. It went all up my right arm, down my right side and also a little on my left arm. It was driving me mad and eventually I sought some help and went to see a herbalist. She gave me some clay to use on the rash and a herbal tincture to take medicinally. She also got me into foraging for wild herbs and making drinks; mainly cleavers cold infusion and nettle and sweet violet teas. On top of this she advised that I may have to give up dairy produce. We have the most wonderful local farm; a biodynamic community farm that produces the best ever milk, great cheddar cheese and good yoghurt and kefir; all unpasteurised and so full those natural enzymes important for digestion. I’ve always liked dairy produce and so was loathed to give it up, but although the clay and herbs were helping, the rash continued to drive me mad so I decided to try going ‘dairy free’. Within 48 hours the inner tension in me began to ease and my skin started to improve. The difference was remarkable and it became clear that dairy produce was doing me no favours at all and I haven’t touched it since. Throughout my life I have struggled on and off a little with eczema and I may have always been intolerant to dairy, but never had I suffered with a rash like this.
Just after giving up dairy produce (and with the rash still far from healed), I made my six monthly visit to Belgium to see Leonid Blyum, my rehabilitation consultant, and although he appreciated the dairy side of things, he had another take on why my skin had come out in such a rash at this time. On each visit he conducts a thorough examination of my body and six months before was the first time he noticed that my skin had not had a smell to it. This time the greasiness had gone. For years my skin had been dead, not dead as in decaying but dead as in not playing its proper functional role in the life of the body, and now it was coming back to life. He suggested that my skin had been a dumping ground and the rash was my skin ridding itself of the toxins built up in it. To give an analogy, imagine a city where the waste is dumped outside of the city wall. The land becomes toxic, but doesn’t cause the city any problems until one day the city expands and the waste ground needs to be built upon. That land then becomes incorporated into the life of the city and the land needs to be cleaned up; the toxicity must be dealt with.
Slowly the clean up process continued until there was very little sign of a rash on my body, but then things started to creep back in again. The rash was beginning to return on my arm. There was a soreness around my eyes and I was getting a rash on my legs. The skin on my face has been sensitive this year. We’ve had a good summer in England (by English standards at least) and it’s been hard to cope with the sun on my face. I’m not a sun worshipper, but I am an outdoor person and normally I love the sun on my face, but this year it has been too much. I’ve often suffered with chilblains on my legs and feet during the winters since I’ve been disabled. These are something you can be inflicted with when there is poor circulation in your skin. I’ve also struggled with the skin breaking down in between my little toes which is due to serious lack of quality at the extremity of paralysed limbs, but never have I suffered with a rash on my legs before. To come out in a rash the skin needs to have life to it and until now my legs have lacked the quality for the skin to be alive enough to come out in a rash. Unlike before, there was no inner tension associated with the skin trouble, in fact I don’t think I have ever had such inner calmness, but I did feel the need to rest a lot and allow my body to deal with whatever was going on.
Two weeks ago I had work to do Saturday morning and then spent the afternoon and evening resting. Sunday morning I felt fit to go and see the Levellers perform on Hastings Pier. It was the 25th anniversary tour of their ‘Levelling the Land’ album and I hadn’t seen them since shortly after that album was released. They were as good as ever and we danced our heads off. I haven’t let myself go like that for a long time. Dancing is almost as good as laughter when it comes to an inner workout and it’s also a great releaser of tension. That night I got home and couldn’t sleep. My skin was alive and throbbing and there seemed like a great outpouring. By the morning I was in a hell of a mess. My face was red and blotchy with the skin around my eyes puffed up. I had come out in a spotty rash up my arms and on my hands and torso. I was totally drained and had to just sit and be quiet. I felt such a need for my body to be quiet that I fasted for two days with nothing but water with a drop of lemon oil.
This truly was an outpouring from the skin. Another wave of the skin coming to life and ridding itself of a build up of toxins. After a few days I felt much better and my skin is clearing up. What is more it feels more alive and seems to have more robustness to it. It is typical for development to come in waves, but this was not so much a wave as a tsunami! I really did dance the toxins out of me that night and it was such a tsunami that, with any luck, any future waves in the process of skin development will be insignificant in comparison.