Most people know that my daughter and I have battled the eczema beast the past few years. It has been a tiring battle. And we have not fully defeated it at this point. But everyone can see that great tremendous progress has been made and we are continuing to make. So they come and ask me what I did that helped. It is a normal reaction since that was what I did when we were battling it. Ask around and hope for a magic pill to pop or cream to apply.
So they will ask, “What did you use/take/not take???”
Honestly, I don’t know how to answer because there isn’t a single answer except what no one wants to hear : PRAY!
I am not trying to be upper spiritual but that is the truth. I hated that answer when I was the one asking those who had seen breakthroughs. Pray? What do you mean pray??? Are you insinuating that *I* am not praying??? Or are you saying that I do not have enough faith???
So I am stumped. I know that they just want the practical tips, just like I did. But the practical tips only work a little. It is the spiritual aspect that makes all the difference. I did all that was “right” and I saw no breakthrough. I prayed the correct prayers and saw no breakthrough. I prayed and cried and prayed and cried some more. Then one day, everything clicked. It made me feel like Hannah in 1 Samuel 1.🙂 I am sure she had prayed many, many times for a baby. Yet it was only on that particular day while she was crying and praying that the Lord chose to answer. Why? I have no idea! But I know God did. And she persevered in praying, over and over and over.
So how should I answer??? I can share with you the practical things that have helped me. It may or may not help you. I can also share with you the prayers I prayed over and over. But until you speak with God and hear Him tell you what to do, it is only one man’s advice to another.
The 2 practical things I did that I felt helped me most are the GAPS diet and clotrimazole.
1. Diet : Step-by-step
Because I believe strongly that Diet does affects our well-being, I cannot not mention diet as part of our healing journey.
a) Elimination Diet
If you had read this blog long enough, you would know that we were on the Elimination Diet for about 1 year. Dd had taken the IgG test which showed that she was reacting to the usual suspects and more! See So what are we allergic to?! It was horrible. I did not know then that what we experienced was a die off effect. No one warned us.
b) No grains
Then we took ourselves off all grains including rice and tapioca flour. Yes, our repertoire of food and marinades shrunk overnight.
Then we went vegetarian – literally ate only vegetables and nuts – to cleanse the body. Did it for 7 days.
d) GAPS Diet
Finally, we proceeded to the GAPS Diet. It was actually a relief to be able to eat all meats and eggs again! We finally saw improvement. But it never totally cleared up. It seemed to clear up many other issues but the skin issue stubbornly remained.
On hindsight, the slow progression to GAPS was helpful for both me the cook, and dd and me the sufferers. We did not do cold turkey which may have sent us over the edge immediately!
2. Anti-fungal cream (active ingredient : Clotrimazole)
I have written at length about all the stuff we have tried in Another One Bites the Dust. And how bad steroid creams are in Steroids just make eczema worse. The only thing that worked was an anti-fungal cream with the active ingredient Clotrimazole. The anti-fungal cream with this active ingredient can be found in Candid or Candazole. Candid is much cheaper and available only at Unity Pharmacies. Candazole is almost double its price and is available at both Unity and Guardian Pharmacies.
This was our breakthrough cream. Because the underlying issue for us is a yeast overgrowth. Not true eczema. And for this revelation, which no doctor ever mentioned at all, is from God. I cried out to Him and He brought to mind to treat the rashes as a fungal rash. The next blog post will cover this in more details.
But I must emphasise again that it wasn’t just the diet and cream that healed us. Because it was only through prayer that I was led to use the cream.
When I am itching I literally cannot think of anything except to scratch. And even when I know it will bleed and make things worse, I will still scratch because it is sheer torture to itch. To help cope with those times, I searched out verses on healing, especially healing of the skin/flesh and prayed them over and over. Not like a chant, but to remind myself of God’s promises. Two passages that spoke to me and gave me strength were :
Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He shall direct your paths.
Do not be wise in your own eyes;
Fear the Lord and depart from evil.
It will be health to your flesh,
And strength to your bones.
Bless the Lord, O my soul;
And all that is within me, bless His holy name!
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And forget not all His benefits:
Who forgives all your iniquities,
Who heals all your diseases,
Who redeems your life from destruction,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies,
Who satisfies your mouth with good things,
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
*Scripture from the New King James Bible and highlights are mine.
And now you know why while it seemed that I should be able to just answer,”GAPS and Clotrimazole healed me!”, it isn’t that simple. So this is my very long answer to a very simple question :D