I’m horrible about trigger avoidance, admittedly, but that’s because there are so many triggers out there that I would have to live in a bubble to avoid them all. I still don’t even know what they all are anyway.
Then there are the ones I do know about that I struggle with the most, like hot baths and flowers and cheesecake, because it’s haaarrrrd to give up the things you love most in life. It’s not just one thing, either. It’s almost everything. As my disease has progressed I have become sensitive to more and more things. Things that I love and even things that define who I am as a person are now off limits and it’s very difficult psychologically to give them ALL up.
So I have resorted to rating my known triggers on a scale from 1-10 in my head in order to make a quick decision if they are “worth it”. Bleach? 6-8 (without my respirator), 2-3 with it. Flowers? 3-4 outside, 6-8 inside (apparently). Cheesecake? 10.
Some things aren’t worth it (cheesecake). Some things are worth it, like bleach (with a respirator).
I also try to get away with sneaking triggers into my world as if somehow my mast cells won’t notice. I rationalize that if it’s just a little bit of something it won’t be as bad if they do react anyway. It’s not true, unfortunately, as I learned (again) this last week or so.
All it took was sneaking in three little daisies to brighten my world:
I seem to do fine with indoor plants as long as they don’t flower or have blooms. I even had to ban floral bouquets last year after connecting my symptoms to flowers. Luckily my indoor culinary herb garden doesn’t seem to bother me at all.
How do I know? My recent spate of symptoms magically disappeared within hours of me throwing just the three little daisies out and changing nothing else in my environment. For the first time in over a week I didn’t wake up red and itchy this morning. My sinuses are clear. My wheeze is gone. No pins and needles in my hands and feet. The excess fluid/weight and brain fog is gone. Gone!
Just like magic, I feel great!
I guess I have to go back to admiring the daisies out the windows again. They’re just not worth it.