Today I went to a market held at an Equestrian Centre. Now this might strike you as foolish if you’ve ever heard my thousand and one tales about being allergic to horses.
I have been allergic to horses from as early as I can remember. I was about two, my parents put me on a pony, then they very quickly took me off again as I’d swollen twice my size and turned bright red. When The Jellicle and I visit her parents they take extreme airlock precautions to make certain I don’t get exposed to horse hair.
That’s the thing really, I haven’t had a real allergic reaction to a horse in a long time, so I figured going to an equestrian centre would probably be ok…
I was very, very wrong and ended up having difficulty breathing, my skin itching like crazy and my eyes watering. So I shut myself in the car until Weasel and the Jellicle had sated their shopping urges. Then I bathed medicinally until my skin was a shade of peach rather than red. I’ve done this before, when I got back from Japan, not having seen a dog in two years I played with Shadow in my Gentleman Friend’s back garden – huge mistake.
I don’t just do it with my allergies, I’m constantly having to remind myself about my fatigue because I very often tell myself that I’m over emphasising how bad it is. I’m not, just like my allergies I downplay them. I’m honestly not sure why I’m so incapable of believing in my own illnesses despite the fact that I regularly have to manage them. I get so annoyed when other people do it, not take my illnesses seriously, yet I find it so hard to do myself.
I’m reasonably sure it’s a product of living in the same society that has produced this narrative of strivers and scrounges. If you achieve then you can’t possibly need and if you need then you’re probably lying about it so you don’t have to take the responsibility that comes with achieving. It’s very all or nothing and bears little resemblance to real life. Actually I owe it to myself and everyone else in my life to remember to get off the horse. We all have needs and abilities and it’s about coming together with our needs and our achievements so that together we can be better than we all are alone.