My Journey with Necrobiosis Lipoidica
For me, this started around 4 or 5 years ago now. It started with one little red mark, I thought that maybe I’d caused it at work or the gym because I’m clumsy and I bruise like a peach so it was nothing out of the ordinary for me. I never really thought anything about it until weeks later when this one was still going strong and getting bigger and then another decided to come along and join. 2 lovely red marks, one on my right shin and one on my left shin - they were red, shiny, and sometimes sore to touch but I was still convinced that they were just some sort of weird bruises (because I’m stubborn).
I think it was my Mum that convinced me to go to the doctors, as Mums do. So, I booked an appointment and went to the doctors and they just said these words…Necrobiosis Lipoidica. All I could think inside my head was ‘what did he just say to me’. After the appointment I went home knowing that it was a skin condition, possibly linked to diabetes, with a tube of steroid cream to clear the red marks up and an appointment with the dermatologist so they could take a second look…. just in case.
Whilst I was waiting for that appointment, I actually gained two more marks, bringing the grand total to four!! These two were and still are smaller than the original two. It was when I saw the dermatologist that I found out that these marks were really unlikely to ever go. This was so difficult to hear because I was under the impression that a bit of cream would clear it up no problem, that these marks would be no more. But no. It was difficult at first, I felt more frustrated than anything, like was the diabetes not enough. I was at a point in my life where my diabetes was not a priority and I didn’t particularly like talking about it, so the thought of having to explain to people that they were linked to my diabetes did not thrill me *moody teenager eye roll*.
It didn’t take me long to get over it, after my initial freak out. I just remember being so annoyed that I just thought:
- Why should I have to hide my legs away?
- So what if people ask questions?
- Do these marks really define me?
Over time it just got easier and easier, I began to love my legs even with the red marks, I didn’t mind when people would ask questions because I got the opportunity to educate. I look at them now and just think of everything I have gone through with my diabetes and realise how seriously amazing I am, how strong I am because I’m not afraid to admit that diabetes is not easy.