Sunday, July 22, 2012

Allergic Reaction

Last year when Heather and I moved to Texas, I was relieved to find that neither Heather nor I experienced any noticeable allergies.  This was great news for Heather, and somewhat surprising, as she had various issues with allergies in the previous three states we had lived in.  For myself, it was a relief, because although I have not been one to suffered from allergies, the one exception to that was when I lived in Texas for 10 weeks of Army training almost 20 years ago.  I don't know what I was allergic to, but my nose never stopped running for two months, so I was a bit nervous about living just a few hours' drive south of where I had experienced such annoyance.

When we moved here the state was experiencing a record drought, with no rainfall and daily high temps at about 110 degrees for a couple of months.  As you can imagine, not much was growing at that time, other than people's electric bill.  I didn't really appreciate the upside of living in a virtual furnace at the time.  This year has been another story.  Rain and cooler temps in the 90s have returned to San Antonio, making for a more moderate and comfortable climate for man and beast, as well as vegetation that is indigenous here.  Unfortunately, it turns out that I am indeed allergic to something that grows in Texas.

My misery began on Monday, when I woke up to a sore throat.  This is normally a precursor to a cold, so I expected to be coming down with one.  this would normally mean one day of sore throat followed by around 6 days of my body producing vast quantities of, to put it delicately, sinus congesting mucus.  Instead, by Thursday the normal cold symptoms had not kicked in, but were replaced by a chronic sore throat, cough, and restricted airway.

By Friday morning my voice was down to a whisper as I finally broke down and called for a doctor's appointment between coughing fits.  They were able to get me in within 45 minutes, and I was given Claritin for my hay fever, plus some medicine in small gel tablets to help with the cough.  Unfortunately after sitting in my car all day the gel tabs had congealed into one mass of melded spheres, although I was able to get them separated using a butter knife and delicate pulling.  More importantly, the Claritin has kicked butt on whatever evil microscopic plant matter was causing my respiratory woes quite nicely.

While my usually strong, if slightly unpleasant, singing voice won't be back for a few more days while my throat recovers from its present roughed up state, at least I am sleeping through the night now without feeling like I'm about to lose the ability to breath, and I can carry on a conversation without coughing every 3 seconds, which you don't really appreciate until you are in the throes of pollen-induced hypoxia.  Breathing really is one of life's great pleasures, so take a deep breath, and enjoy!