The second the sun comes out I get all excited for spring because there is nothing I love more than the delicate heat of spring sunshine on my back. As any local does though, I quickly remind myself that the sun in Sacramento is a slippery slope. You see, one day it’s beautiful and sunny and the wind is blowing through your perfectly coiffed hair, and the next day you are in the 9th Circle of Hell and your normally straight hair turns into a frizz basket, and you better just get used to it because you will look this sweaty for at least 3 straight months! And I think I’ve clarified before exactly how I feel about that. So although the sun has been nice the past few days, I’m sort of scared of what’s to come. Climate Control is not really my bag. But now I also have ridiculous worsening allergies to contend with. I know most people have a sneeze or two when the flowers are in bloom, but I recently found out that when it comes to the ability to deal with histamines, my body is taking a long ride on the short bus.
I went to the doctor at the end of December because I had a dry cough that had been persistent for about a year. It wasn’t really bugging me, but apparently the decibel level of my cough was somewhere between Indoor Megadeth Show and Airplane Engine Symphony (who knew? I’ll put that on my resume). As you can imagine Garrett was lovingly nudging me to get it checked out. After dealing with a lifetime of mild allergy issues at various times during the year (spring and summer being the times I don’t have the luxury of living without anti-histamines in my system) I was not surprised when my doctor examined me and almost immediately determined (unless any other diagnostic tests came back with other indicators) that year round allergies were causing post-nasal drip and this was the most likely the culprit causing me to cough. As for the decibel level? Well that’s just my god-given talent apparently. My levels of sexiness are reaching sky high proportions right now, aren’t they?
So she sent me to have a chest X-ray and my lungs looked just fine. Then I had to have a CT scan of my sinus cavity to make sure that there weren’t Alien Life Forms growing in there or something, and sadly it came back completely normal. I say sadly because I was secretly holding out hope that the CT scan would show an insanely large sinus cavity because I have a super-hero sense of smell that plagues me (Lord Help Us All one day when I am pregnant) and I was hoping for once and for all to find a reason for that, but alas No! -- normal sinuses on all accounts.
The final step was to go through a lung function test. I was kind of scared of that to be honest with you, but mostly the fear was derivative of the fact that I was expected to be at the hospital:
1) At a very early hour
2) Having not consumed any caffeine
3) TESTING A FUNCTION????
BAHAHAHAHAHA. A Function? Pre-coffee?
Obviously the Doctor did not get the memo that I don’t do ANY functioning, lung or otherwise, without coffee -- but since she asked me so nicely I showed up and did as I was told and breathed into a crazy apparatus and chatted with a lovely and considerate gentleman who was drinking a piping hot cup of coffee across the table – so help me god, he was lucky he lived to tell about it. But in the end I was delighted to hear that not only do my lungs function, but they function “at the level of a professional athlete” and you know, I felt an nostalgic sense of pride in that moment. But that quickly turned to defeat when I realized that since this was my last diagnostic test, it was official: I am allergic to pretty much everything in the free world, all of the time.
So if you thought I was sexy before, you should just see me now that I have this prescribed “Allergy Cocktail” of pills, inhalers, nose-sprays and neti pots. It is an ear-nose-and-throat disco inferno up in here with all the hotness, my friends. After almost 60 days on the wagon the cough has subsided a bit, but not all the way. Both specialists I saw warned me that it would not be a quick fix and they think it will take months for my irritated throat to heal since I left it “severely untreated” for over a year. The dramatics of that statement make me chuckle a bit. I don’t know exactly what I think about this diagnosis yet, since I am definitely NOT a fan of taking medicine at all, let alone daily just to function. (Let me insert a Quick Disclaimer: I am not making a judgment about you if you need medicine to function. Many people do and I am happy to live in a time where it is readily available). It's just that I do not subscribe to the general philosophy of Western Medicine that every problem with the human body needs a little yellow pill to solve it. I’d prefer to let my immune system do its job correctly and not micro-manage the whole situation. But obviously my body is failing me a bit, so this is kind of a challenge for me.
I would love to hear of any kind of natural remedy worked for you when it comes to allergies. What have you got for me internets???