The rash quietly emerged about an hour after I got off the phone with a harried counselor who worked in the financial aid department. Classes start in little more than a week and so these poor counselors are under attack by frantic individuals wanting to know where their money is. I realized this before I picked the phone up. I didn't want to make the call, but the tiny OCD bureaucrat that hides in a tiny compartment of my brain was insisting that I do due diligence. It's been a week since I sent in my appeals package. I wanted to be sure that the powers that be had received it.
I spent 43 minutes on hold waiting to speak to a human being. I was told that my case was still being processed and that the office was receiving such an enormous volume of correspondence that there was no way that the counselor with whom I was speaking could tell me if my paperwork had been received. Instead of insisting that she drop everything and spend the rest of her morning finalizing my case, I thanked her for her time and let her get back to work.
And I told myself that I wasn't stressed and got back to doing whatever it is I do on any given day.
Then the rash made its debut. I applied prescribed unguents and thought no more of it.
This morning, I awoke to a screaming rash on the entirety of my face that reaches back onto my scalp. It stops somewhere behind my crown and on a scale of 1 to 10 it is a constant 5 as far as itchiness is concerned.
Since I know stress over my financial aid situation has been the genesis of this latest round of skin GvHD, I plan on doing incredibly mindless things this weekend in an effort to counteract it. I have topical prescriptions that will help with the rashes and itching, but until I chill out, they won't go away entirely. I've been down this road a few times. If you need me, I'll be on the couch surrounded by diet-blowing snacks. I might even share if you ask nicely.