Don’t get me wrong, I’ve got nothing against modern medicine. Thanks to modern medicine and a couple of its practitioners (and especially a skillful surgeon) my son still has a mother (and I still have a functioning uterus and bladder). But.
(You knew there’s be a “but”, didn’t you?)
This is not about surgery. This is about pills. And salves. You know, I’m allergic. As a child I reacted to insect bites. Mosquito bites, wasp bites, they all ended up red, swollen and itchy. Then it turned out, I wasn’t having a cold all year long, I had hay fever instead. And then I started to be allergic to the sun.
At that time I was studying for my master’s thesis. What better place to learn than beneath the river. Each day I’d spend hours outside with my books. And then my skin began itching and developing a rash. Of course I applied sunscreen. My skin is so white that people suspect me of living in a cellar, even when I’m actually tanned. One day I planned to go out, but didn’t for whatever reason. Well, it turns out that I’m allergic not to sun rays but to the brand of sunscreen I had been using all my life. Duh.
I have to tell you that I’m coming from a family where everything has to be treated. Preferably chemical. A pill, an ointment, whatever. So my mother put soothing salve on every single of my mosquito bites. Ten years ago I happened to be bitten by a mosquito and I RAN OUT OF SALVE! Guess what?
- Mosquito bites do heal even if you do nothing at all.
- If I don’t put special healing and cooling salve on my mosquito bite, there will be no allergic reaction.
So I turn out to be allergic not against insect bites, but against insect bite-salve. So I have to keep this in mind: I have a very sensitive skin. If something unusual is appearing, leave whatever you smear on it off. (So I was a little quicker when I found out that my skin didn’t like the new moisturizer I had bought.)
Unfortunately my allergies to pollen and mold are real. It was not my fragile disposition that let me have a year-round cold, but hay fever. I actually suffer from it from March to October. And I’m not a pretty sight at the height of it in the beginning of August. You’d think I’m having influenza only I’m not feverish. So I started taking a pill. I have been taking this for the last ten years or so. With the exception of my pregnancy when I was allowed only a measly nose spray. The pills didn’t stop me from having a running and itching nose altogether. But I shuddered to imagine my state if I didn’t take them.
I don’t quite know why, but last week I looked at the list of unwanted symptoms accompanying my pills for the first time in years. “May cause drowsiness, tiredness and heightened appetite.” Duh! I have been tired for years regardless of the hours I slept. And maybe there was a reason that I never lost weight in the summer. So I decided to stop taking the pills and see what happens. Well:
1. I’m not feeling tired anymore in spite of lack of sleep.
2. My mind doesn’t feel numb and dumb anymore.
3. I’m sneezing less than before.
4. What I do have is sneezing fits, a sore throat and itching and running eyes.
So. The pills are out of the picture. My fear of getting allergic asthma or chronic bronchitis is not big enough to justify suffering a numb mind and heavy tiredness. I’m starting to look for some other treatment for my allergies. Maybe acupuncture or homeopathy. I’m not going chemical again.
Any suggestions? What’s worse to you? The malady or the remedy?