[Graphic Opening (Words appear over black brick background)]
[Sterling:] Bad Solutions
[Elizabeth:] Bogus Stories
[Kerry:] Being Silent?
No. No more BS about HS.
[Sterling:] It’s your man Sterling, um, aka the Wound God. They ask where I get that name from and it’s simple—I have HS. Hidradenitis suppurativa, crazy disease that I’ve had for 7 years now. I’m a podcaster. I’m a husband. I’m a friend. And I’m just a person that also has HS. I remember when I was maybe going through puberty, I could feel like sore spots on my scalp, and when I—I want to say I was like nineteen—and I felt a same kind of soreness on the left side of my groin. I knew that wasn’t normal. "The world’s largest pimple" is how I described it when I first started going to doctors. Everywhere on my body that would have been dark or dank or damp was filled with wounds. And my entire scalp lit up with wounds everywhere. They started bursting automatically. It was terrifying and I—I didn’t know what to do. It wasn’t until I was maybe, say like 21, when I actually got somebody to actually take a real look at this. A doctor walked in the ER, looked me up and down, and told me I had hidradenitis and then gave me uh, like, uh, a piece of paper to print it out. That was it. Once I got that diagnosis, um, it felt like an almost instant change in my life. And there was no real answers, which was the biggest problem for me. It was really depressing; it put me in a really dark place. I’m not that kind of person. I’m just a person taking it day to day. And I had to realize that if I wanted to be inspired, I was going to have to inspire myself. I have a voice—I might as well use my voice. What I’m trying to say, really, is if you have HS, you’re not alone. Just ’cause you feel alone at this moment, there’s, you know, plenty of us out here that have the disease, that are living with the disease and making the disease live with them. You know what I mean? The biggest thing I really want to do going forward is inform people about the disease. A lot of people see shame behind the disease. You know, you’re not a freak; you’re just a person. You have HS, go to the doctor. It’s like you take your car to a mechanic, you take yourself to a doctor. Go do it. Living with HS as if your life if over is BS. You know what I mean? And that’s not something I’m here for. We’re gonna keep pushing forward, I’m-a keep doing things; we’re gonna keep podcasting. And this disease is just going to ride shotgun and deal with it ’cause I’m-a keep pushing.