As some of you know; or, rather, as all within an earshot of my perennial clamor and whine know, I am allergic to everything. And that’s only, I dare say, a mild overstatement. No sir, I am not allergic to everything, but I am allergic to quite a bit. Enough to make it virtually impossible to exist in a room, or outdoor setting, without being in contact with at least one of my many histamine foes.
Five years ago, after discovering that I was allergic to every variant of mold, dust, tree, grass, plant and dander, I opted for a series of immunization shots. Three years after that, without seeing any faint shift in difference, I stopped. I was frustrated and plum out of money.
At that point, I gave up the search. I told myself that it was simply going to be this way. The hot flashes would find solace in prolonged dunks in ice baths. The itchy skin would find temporary, mild forms of relief in anti-itch lotions and Benadryl comas.
In recent months, however, I started to develop severe intestinal distress (seriously the best euphemism ever), of which I found to be especially so after consuming gluten, and often times following intense exercise (soccer games, for instance). After testing my theory, I reasoned that I had an allergy to gluten, or at the very least, to some food.
So I went back to the allergist and was tested for all foods, just to be sure, to know. Two hours later, my allergist tells me that my test results claim I am allergic to onions, avocados, tomatoes, peanuts, pistachios, celery and few other things that didn’t make much sense. But, I assure you, as does my Doctor, that I am not, in fact, really allergic to these things. No, seriously. I’m not.
Get this: I am so very much an “allergic patient,” that my heightened levels of histamine skew results for these sorts of tests. Unless, as the doctor said, I am eating avocados and onions and tomatoes everyday, that I don’t have anything to worry about.
But I ask, with frustration in my heart, nothing to worry about? Have I not been through this before?
Intestinal distress? Check.
Hot flashes? Check.
Spurts of costly medical care without relief? Check.
So I ask, should I be worried? In response, not really. I’ve been through it before. And while I may have bouts of discomfort and distress and frustration, I still do the things I want to do. I hike. I run. I play soccer atop the grasses that seem to know of my pains, but know me well enough not to kill me.
And I’m happy. I’ve grown accustomed. Mentally. Physically.
The next steps are as follows:
- Go back to the antihistamines. Zyrtec, twice a day (wait 2 weeks and then add on Zantac twice a day; wait 2 weeks and add on Doxepin for its anti-inflammatory attributes; if the itching doesn’t go away, add on Plaquenil)
- Have a meet and greet with a GI Doctor and schedule an endoscopy to get the final confirmation of Celiac disease
And so I sit here and think to myself, perhaps I am becoming part of it; meeting the solution halfway, so to speak. It’s been such a long, suffused run. Perhaps I am just, quite simply, a version of the pollen that tingles my nose, the elm tree that scratches my throat, the dust mite that renders me red.
I am, quite simply, a histamine.