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Allergies

While I am an unhealthy mess, with so many annoying conditions and syndromes that I dare not list them all, my kids are healthy. Really healthy, particularly Maya who, when Asher is bedridden and feverish for two days over a stomach virus, experiences the same virus by being slightly put off dinner one night. So it seemed odd this spring when she had an annoying cold that just would not go away. Finally, it occurred to me to try an antihistamine and, sure enough, things improved somewhat.

I took her to our GP, who referred her to an allergist. The appointment was yesterday. He did a scratch test, where drops of different common allergens were placed on her arms, then the nurse used a pin to make a small scratch in each one. We then sat in the waiting room waiting to see if anything happened. In short order, several spots along one arm began to turn red and swell.

May I just say it is a good thing Maya isn’t sick a lot, because that kid is a huge whiner. First, she was so freaked about the scratch test in the first place that I had to order her to sit down and then hold her arms down for the nurse. Then, as the spots began to react, she flopped around and moaned about not being able to scratch, and complained that it didn’t just itch, it hurt horribly. We were sharing the waiting room with a mom and little girl of about 5 or 6, who watched her with huge eyes. When Maya started to say it hurt, I said very, very pointedly at her, “You mean it itches, right? Nothing here actually hurts. It is just annoying that it itches.” She got the message, but didn’t stop whining about how unbearable the itching was.

So, she’s allergic to several trees (including cedar, as in the cedar hedges we have in the backyard), grass, ragweed. Basically, she’s managed to cover the entire summer. The doctor says that it is likely to just get worse and worse each year and we should do allergy shots.

Off my game, I just agreed without questioning and paid about $200 for them to order the allery serum to be sent to my GP, who will administer them. As we were driving home, I wondered why so many people put up with seasonal allergies when you can just get the shots to cure everything once and for all. I found out when I got home and actually read the information he gave me.

I have to take my kid to the doctor for the shot once a week, staying half an hour to watch for a bad reaction, for twenty-eight weeks! Then it goes down to every 2-3 weeks for a while. That’s seven bloody months of weekly doctor visits!

I know it is still better than sneezing your way through summer for the rest of your life, but I still don’t know if I made the right move here. Maybe she will buck the trend and not get worse. Maybe all these stupid shots won’t work. Maya, of course, is horrified, and I didn’t even tell her how long this has to go on.

I think I need a nap.

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