Celebrating the Winter Holidays with Chemical Allergies

My husband and I both grew up celebrating Christmas. Over the course of our life together we’ve had big, fully-decorated Christmases, smaller, effortless Christmases, and everything in between. About 8 years ago, we bought a fake Christmas tree with natural-looking, moulded tips, and that has been a staple of our Christmas decorating most years since. […]


My, the Heat Really Takes it Out of You

For the past two weeks, I’ve been camping medieval-style. That’s 14 days of sleeping in a ger (a close relative of a yurt), trying to ignore bugs (all except the really big ones), no air conditioning when sometimes the humidex beat 106 degrees Fahrenheit (when even sweat had nowhere to go), walking everywhere, port-a-potties, and […]


Allergy Communication in a Group

I went camping again this past weekend. That seems to be a very common theme lately, but this time it was with a group. This means that chores (including dish washing, cooking, and meals) are shared. In situations like this, it’s really important to communicate needs with a large group of people, which seems almost […]


Weddings

This weekend I went to a wedding, about four hours from home. It was a beautiful wedding incorporating all sorts of rituals and touches special to the bride and groom. There were family of the bride and groom, friends galore, and lots of hugging and dancing. Food was typical buffet style. That’s what you typically […]


Struggling for Missing Allergy Answers

I went camping again this past weekend. Preferring not to set up a tent or to stay in someone’s house, I took a mattress and slept in the back of my van. I took all the stuff I needed to stay well, spent the majority of my time outside, tried to stay away from scented […]


Plane Nerves, Part 2

← See Part One here I returned this week from a fantastic week of camping in California. For two weekends and a week, I revelled in glorious outdoor splendour 2000 miles from home (so the plane’s map system told me), while watching the people around me sniffle and sneeze from outdoor allergies. Before leaving, I was […]


Going to a Large Gathering with Allergies

Large masses of people. *shiver* They used to not bother me at all. Now I fear being a part of a crowd, especially indoors. The combination of cleaning chemicals used in commercial establishments, fragranced body care products, and laundry detergents and shampoos wafting through the air makes me fear for the next several days. Itchy, […]


Plane Nerves

Today I take my first plane trip since finding out about my chemical allergies. That’s 6 hours of sitting in close proximity to a LOT of people, all their associated detergents, body sprays, perfumes, fabric softeners, hairspray… Understandably, I’m a little nervous. The trip would be unmanageable without flying, as I’m traveling from Ontario, Canada, […]