And so, Spring has sprung. The flowers are all lovely. The sky is blue. The clouds are fluffy and white, scampering across the beautiful blue sky like so many pretend sheep. The breeze is gentle. The days are warm and getting longer. The weekends are filled with fun outdoor activities. The sun is a brilliant and welcome sight after the gray days of winter. The bees are buzzing, and everyone is happy, happy, happy. Everything is coming up roses, figuratively and literally.
I think most of us welcome the changes with open arms. We emerge from our darkened houses to stand in the warmth and blink in the friendly sun, letting the rays wash over our upturned faces. We shed our outer layers with giddy abandon. Sweaters, scarves, hats, coats, boots, and heavy socks all must go as we run out into the warmth and the light. It’s such a cliché, but I think it’s true: Spring is rebirth. No matter how jaded we have become with our lives and the people around us, Spring’s arrival brings with it that little kid joy that makes us want to twirl in circles and laugh in the sun. Or, at the very least, take our lunch outside for an impromptu picnic at work.
I don’t love Spring. I think I’ve written about this at the start of Spring every year that my blog has been up and running. I love the beauty of the world waking up around me. I love seeing the bees return — yes, even the giant, bumbling ones that buzz around the roses near my front door and give me a fright every time I go in or out. I love hearing the birds sing. I love how green and fresh everything looks. I love how my heart feels lighter, somehow. I love all these things about Spring and, yet, I do not love Spring.
And you know why? Actually, I’m sure you do know why. I complain about it all the time.
I don’t love Spring because I am allergic to it. Every May flower brought about by every April shower. Every newly budding, preciously fresh leaf on every tree. Every bit of soft and cuddly bunny fur … well, if bunnies stopped and let me cuddle them. Every flower petal blown on every soft and gentle Spring breeze. Yep. I am allergic to it all. And I tend to experience Spring by standing in my window nursing a hot cup of tea in an effort to open up my aching sinuses. These periods of longing are punctuated by short bursts of activity in which I dash outdoors for an hour or so every day to walk my dogs, both of whom adore Spring with the kind of giddy abandon that only dogs can muster. These forays make me feel like a woman without a country, as they leave me feeling happy and wheezy all at the same time.
I used to see an allergist. But I stopped going many months ago. (Maybe even as long as a year ago?) I am a bad allergy sufferer. Or a bad patient. Or … something. At any rate, I kind of gave up on the whole allergist thing because I was allergic to so many things that their advice was basically, “Just stay inside with your windows closed. And get rid of your dogs. You should never have dogs.” This was not advice that made me happy. It only made me feel hopeless. And, honestly, I don’t care how deathly allergic I am to all the outside things, I’m not giving up my dogs. Ever. I am typing this with one of the silly beasts curled up on my feet under my desk. There are few things in the universe as comforting as a dog curled up on one’s feet.
Today, though, I am venturing back to the allergist. I don’t have a choice, as this Spring, my sinuses have started a new thing where they make my eye sockets hurt. I think I can say, without reservation, that you have not experienced pain until you have had to live with aching eye sockets. Seriously, I didn’t even know eye sockets could ache. And I have to say that I think this should NOT be a “thing”. But whatever. It’s not like the universe will listen to me on this. If it did, I wouldn’t have aching eye sockets, to begin with.
I have mixed feelings about seeing the allergist again. I am sure they are going to give me all kinds of nagging hell for dropping out on them for so long. And I suspect their advice will not have changed. I don’t want to live my life indoors, watching everything happen from behind double-paned glass. I don’t want to feel hopeless and confused in the face of my many (many, many, many, many) allergy triggers, awash in a sea of inhalers and pills. I feel a sense of impending doom circling the pit of my stomach. And yet, in spite of this, I am hopeful that I can, somehow, find a way to live with these allergies of mine. Because I would like to stand there, toss away my heavy winter coat, and feel the sun on my face. And I would like to do so with a minimum of coughing and wheezing. Is this too much to ask? I don’t know … maybe. But I guess I will see.