and here you are living despite it all with #allergies #allergy #nickelallergy #foodallergy #airbornallergy #worldmentalhealthday

#worldmentalhealthday Inspiring words by Rupi Kaur. Also if this man isn’t my spirit animal, I don’t know what else is. 


This was supposed to be an Instagram post, but you all know I talk too much. So I made it a blog post. There have been new group members in our Facebook group. Newly diagnosed and all the people I’ve interacted with one on one and more mostly say that they won’t enjoy life anymore, they won’t be able to socialize or anything. And you know I get that so well. I get how you choose to eat something in the restaurant, so you don’t make people feel bad and just how you want to get out the house and just enjoy people without being pitied. I get it so much I wrote a blog post on cheating and what I lost, “Diary of a Mad Allergy Woman.

But now 2 years later, what I don’t get is the pure laziness or weakness of people we have social interactions with, the non-allergic folks. Why is there an invisible understanding that the allergic people have to accommodate the nonallergic people’s feelings? Like who started that, that the norm is more important than health, and if someone cannot be normal then we should stay away from them. Arg!

For example, My mom and I went to a church event a couple of years ago, and they served soul food. I only started eating “soul food” which I hated by the way when I went to college. So here is a disclaimer, at this moment I had a full-fledged nickel allergy to food, and my mom had really bad stomach problems. I didn’t eat any of the food, but my mom ended up eating the food and was sick for about 2 days. Also, she was doing a cleanse. I asked her, “why did you even eat the food when you knew it would make you sick?” Her response, “it would be rude if we both weren’t eating it.” Let’s take a moment to admire this inspirational motherly teachable moment; I am being sarcastic by the way.  

Why am I the one who needs to put my body through hell for you not to be uncomfortable? I think that these teachable moments really did shape a lot of myself hate like I am the one doing something wrong. There were more teachable moments from the church, A walk on the Anaphylaxis Side and from my sister Spring Break Fail! And much more. But I refuse to have people who make me feel like my DNA is failing them and me. There is no use for that negativity.

And I am sitting here like how was I blaming this on myself? How? And I know how. So I wrote a poem about it. It has taken about 5 years, 99% of lost friends, homelessness and more because of my allergy to feel like we as a people, we need to do better. Allergic People (to ourselves) and nonallergic people (to the allergic people) stop making it hard, accept what you are allergic to and move forward. It’s easier for someone to stay on their sensitivity diet when the people they used to know aren’t dropping like flies. And as a whole, we need to have more stamina for life. It’s not always roses or thorns. We don’t need to define it; we just need to live it. 

But living despite it all will not look like before, you cannot pull the past without pushing yourself away, with the way you push your body, food after food in order to be accepted, even though you cannot accept yourself. Reactions after reactions so you can have social interactions. Living they say, it comes in the forms of laughter, communion, and delicacies in oneness. Later to have a week of recovery from the weapons you declared on your body.  Rashes, nerve pains, fatigue, weakness, shame, guilt, headaches, all for people to include you. For the same people who cannot accept you for you. But this isn’t living my dear. You are suffocating yourself and harming your DNA like it has failed you. No, it hasn’t, it knew what it was before you got here. It hasn’t failed you, people have failed you. They haven’t made it a safe place to accept yourself and your only way not to lose the past is to hurt your future. What you allow will persist it will do more harm that you will know, and one day you won’t recover. But I know if a baby isn’t nurtured it will not grow to love itself, and if your body isn’t nurtured you won’t grow to love it. It will be the loneliest road you will ever walk but when you find people who view people as people than some frivolous fun, “normal” social interaction. That is when you will start living. And when you accept that your limitations on food are not connected to yourself worth that is when you will not tolerate anything but acceptance. That’s when living begins.

I am not going to sit here and say that with your struggle with allergies you will eventually come to this conclusion of self-acceptance. I even haven’t come to this conclusion of self-acceptance, well not fully. The restrictive diet (check / uncheck at times), metal restriction (check), airborne smoking allergy (uncheck) (uncheck) can we rewind, and this never happens.

I had a mental breakdown today because I was jealous that this guy I am talking to is going to have a social experience that I cannot give him. I cannot sit at a bar and not worry about what I am eating, who I am touching, etc. He hasn’t ever made me feel like he is missing out but that little voice in your head that was embedded by those teachable moments of how your allergy is inconveniencing them rears its ugly head. It will not be easy it’s actually the hardest thing you’ll ever do. And just try to accept yourself.  

This is why I have no social interaction really. I cannot eat out because of the metals that cook the food and my low nickel diet and also the smoking aspect of my allergy. I have seen that I cannot go outside for too long because you know smokers and I cannot touch people because you know smokers. I end up having really bad nerve pains and almost blow out my back and cannot recover for a week. I know for a fact my allergy wouldn’t be this bad if I had an actually support system not one challenging my physical and mental health.

With severe allergies, it’s like a death. You are losing who you were and treat it as such. I often call my symptoms as another name in order to treat it better, because this self-love thing doesn’t come easily to me. Its name is Grandma but I mean if you have senior citizen symptoms what else do you call it. Actually, it’s Elenor, is a black woman from the south who has been through some shit and doesn’t take shit from no one. It’s way better when Elenor wants to stand up for herself than me. Lol, Can we applaud my therapeutic way of coping? I guess my degree wasn’t for nothing.  But actually, try it, what is your allergy named?  But again, I try each and every day even though most days I would rather crawl under a rock, but wait that has nickel.  😯 But in all, try to be aware of your triggers, the people you are around, your mental health and such. And don’t compromise yourself to the hospital, been there done that, because you want to socialize. Arg! The thought of the lengths we go to feel normal again is beyond me, but I know it’s because people make us feel useless to ourselves and them. But in all, we can be internet friends because you know I don’t socialize because of… you guessed it smokers. Can’t trust no one in these streets, in my Elenor voice. 

Don’t forget to comment below what your illness, allergy .., etc. name is and their background information? 

Till next time,

Live like your body intended you to live not like others intended you to live.

Barbara
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Barbara

Thank You for stopping by, it is much appreciated.I am neurotically Nickely Challenged😫, food lover 🍱, social rock🙍, & trying to navigate this adult life as nickel free as possible😓 I would love to hear what you thought about the post, so comment below.
Barbara
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3 thoughts on ““And here you are living despite it all” with allergies #worldmentalhealthday

  1. Ei Crusade

    Hi,
    Just found your writing. Love! I don’t have a nickel allergy(I think) but I have mcs and allergies/asthma etc. This I call Loca (as in livin la vida loca) and because people that aren’t educated about it assume I’m crazy. I’m finding strength in your strong words. Thank you.

    Reply
    1. Barbara Post author

      You are so welcome! I think I have MCS I’ve been trying to figure out if there are doctors out there who can help me. So any help would be great. Nickel is in smoke making my everyday life a bit Loca as you put it. I am glad I could help you. We definitely need to stick together. Would you please email me at nickelychallenged@gmail.com so I can discuss your MCS a bit further. Thanks for stopping by 🙂

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