I am pleased to see the first book I have contributed to come to life – Scars, Adhesions and the Biotensegral Body is edited by Jan Threwartha and Sharon Wheeler, and published by Handspring Publishing. Books feel somehow more permanent than articles, which I have been writing for more than a decade now.
New approaches to the Stratum Corneum, the top layer of the skin, have been an essential part of my work in recent years – a research interest and in practical observation of my clients in the clinics. Advanced science can shed new light and expand the ‘raison d’etre’ for this fragile and hard-working layer every day. It serves us by protecting, sensing and cocooning our emotional self. We care to see, touch and treat the envelope every day aiming at smooth, even and dewy complexion and its quality often makes us loved and secure in the society. More so, an imperfection – from skin conditions to scars – causes alert and distress that we are constantly reminded of.
Scarring is hard to resolve; a permanent mark of a disease or injury. As I work with people’s faces, I see surgical scars, scars from injuries, burns and acne scarring. They all tell a story of a change, a dent in the skin and in our selves that has been felt for and lived with for a long time. It is the emotional impact of scarring and the stories that follow that interest me most.
Real creativity and innovation happens at the borderlines that lie between disciplines’
It was a privilege to be asked to contribute to this chapter in the book, in particular after having trained in Sharon Wheeler’s ScarWork practice – presenting my ideas and expertise to a newly emerging group of people. These researchers and clinicians work with fascia, a new organ described as ‘a matrix of collagen bundles and elastic fibres surrounded by fluid, within and between tissues’, studying and treating deep changes in scar tissue.
The surface ‘emotional interface’ where my contribution lies impacts on our communication with the environment – be that sensing the external elements or shielding ourselves from the sight of others and being vulnerable. Our senses, sight and touch, explore the scars with displeasure and as Sharon discovered in her pioneering work, it takes another human being to touch the scar in a specific way and integrate our experience, to improve its appearance. Happy reading!