To begin, thank you to my family, friends, classmates, coworkers, fellow bloggers, allergy sufferers,, and many others for the overwhelmingly positive comments on my blog last week. (In case you missed it, view it here!) I could actually feel the shock from some of my very best friends and people I see on a daily basis that the word disability can be used to describe my allergies. It truly was so touching to me. Like I said, the idea of it all quite literally shocked me, too. Someone mentioned that they like calling analyphylaxis food allergies “dissed-abled” or “pro-abled” and I love it! 🙂
After a lot of reflection on the post, reading Facebook comments in allergy forums, and speaking to my family, I think I finally am unraveling more of the reasons for my allergy passion…
There is a lack of understanding by society of how severe food allergies actually are. I think we can shift the mindset from awareness to understanding. It is most definitely not something any of us can control and I think that is where some confusion lies. It is a burden that I don’t want for myself and no one wants to deal with either. If we are being honest, it sucks and I wouldn’t wish the pain and struggle on my worst enemy.
My only wish is that food allergies can be integrated as “normalcy” in society. The number of children and adults developing food allergies is increasing dramatically, but the “normalness” of them is not. While the peanut-free table in the lunchroom sounds like a great idea, isn’t it just leading to further isolation? Just some food for thought.