Sunday, May 18, 2014

Sunday Edit: A Rough Start Into May

I don’t know which fool first said that you can or should pull yourself up by your own boot-straps, but sometimes that’s exactly how managing my asthma feels like.  I am the only one who can help myself even though I might not be physically capable to take any action.  It’s more then just a matter of perseverance, of keeping my head low and continuing through an unpleasant situation until it’s over.  Also, when I’m in the moment struggling to do something as basic as breathing, fearing for my life, I wouldn’t say I’m the most rational person.  This is why I’m trying to write about my allergic asthma only when I’m on the upswing of things and I can for sure see that it’s all going to be okay in the end.  This may sound immensely dramatic and I don’t like it to be that way.  Sadly, it has been one hell of a year so far :(

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In the beginning of the year, I was trying to find the right job and quitting many of them due to my allergies.  As a result, my lung function was at an all time low.

Then, with a new job and in the process of recovering from the asthma attacks and the lingering inflammation, our car broke down and it was at the mechanic’s garage for almost three weeks.  I found myself going from struggling to walk a mile without triggering my asthma to riding my bicycle to work in the snow.  I was begging my husband to ride with me, but our schedules never quite matched.  When he did, he was shocked to see how badly I was doing on the commute.  As soon as we started riding, my asthma was instantly triggered and I was in a cold sweat and coughing the whole way.  Sadly, this was already an improvement from the previous week when I found myself throwing up by the side of the road from coughing so much.  But what was I supposed to do?  Quit my job?  I only worked this position for about two weeks.  Call in sick?  Or, risk taking the bus when I know people do take their pets on public transportation?  The good news is, the darn car eventually got fixed and I learned to manage my 30-40 minute bicycle ride to work.  It also stopped snowing on the commute which helped tremendously to boost my moral.

Then, in the very beginning of May, I had a massive asthma attack at work.  It was a Monday morning and the family I nanny for just got back from a camping trip with friends who brought their dogs.  I was unaware of this and the day turned into a nightmare!  I left early and requested the following day off.

On the very same day, my husband learned that our apartment complex didn’t just change ownership, but that also, in a stealth mission, the pet policy changed.  Without informing the current residents, new renters now have the option to live here with their dogs.
I was hysterical!
We instantly had to start searching for a new home in which I could feel safe.  The search was frantic, but eventually successful.  Now we can’t move into our new place until the first of June and we are obligated to keep and pay for our current apartment for the next 30 days.  There are no laws to protect people with allergies, no matter how life-threatening their condition may be.  What do you guys think of that?  For me, it’s unnerving to see dogs walk into the building with their owners knowing I have to walk the same hallways as they do. 

At this point, we’ve made it more then halfway through May, I'm recovering from being sick and I weaned myself off of daytime medication.  This was important to me because functioning on asthma and allergy medication is no walk in the park.  One day, I was trying to make sense of and count all the factors that made me sick yet again even though I was on medication, when my husband remarked: “…you most certainly had your third exposure, you were just to medicated and caffeinated to experience it.”  This scared me.  I was too much in a fog to experience things that were happening to me?  What else am I not experiencing?  What else am I missing out on?  Also, I keep taking the car to work because I’m still unfit to ride the bike and I still can’t kick the nightly asthma scare between 3 and 4 in the morning.  The early morning hours is the time when anyone’s lung function is lowest and it’s a tough time for asthmatic like myself because even ambient allergens trigger an asthma attack while the person is sleeping. 

On my personal Facebook page, I mentioned how troubling our current situation is to my physical and spiritual well being. 

One of my friends commented, I might want to start by being grateful for the loving relationship I have with my husband.  I don’t know how kind or callused this remark was intended to be, but it felt off.  I'm really grateful for my husband and the sweet relationship we have.  I couldn’t ask for anything better.  We work together to fight the struggles that seem to come at us, but I’m fearing, how much it is we can handle until our relationship will also turn bitter.

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Despite so many unfavorable circumstances and health struggles, I try to live my life with positive energy and I actively search out things that could make my day a bit better.  I plan fun things to do in advance, so no matter how miserable my day, or my week has been, I get to feel a little less like a decomposing vegetable—I might be sick and walk through life like a zombie, but at least I got to experience something fun, look at something beautiful and get some type of interesting human interaction.  This way, I don’t just get to be sick and miserable and helpless and fear I don’t get to live my life to it’s fullest potential.  I convince myself I’m trying as best I can and I just have to keep pulling hard on those boot-straps.  Frustratingly, from the outside, this just looks like I'm jumping from one fun and picture perfect situation into the next.  Oh well.  While we're at it, let’s look at some more of those pretty pictures…

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Can you see how we got photo bombed?  Someone is peeking at us through the tulips :)

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Yes, we’re trying to have fun despite it all.  I'm hopeful that the coming weeks and months are going to be so much better.  Also, as you might have guessed by seeing me without arctic gear and in a sundress—it's finally feeling like summer.   We had 80 degrees all week and I couldn't be happier.
HappySunday♡ Nina

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