Undulating my tongue in a back-and-forth motion, I attempt to quell the raging itchiness that is assaulting the roof of my mouth. As I do this, my nose runs, as if it is Usain Bolt, speeding to the finish line in a 100 meter dash. At this world record pace, it moves more quickly than tissues can accommodate.
Spring has officially sprung, and with it, my allergies are incapacitating breathing, the histamines getting the best of me.
It’s the damn trees, Mr. Lorax, and right now, no one needs to speak for them.
Upon buying our house 3 1/2 years ago, we inherited a plethora of fruit trees and garden space. Don’t get me wrong, the bounty is beautiful, and we love having the mature trees bloom and bear fruit. The problem: I seem to be hypersensitive to every pollen that blows around our yard, swirling in nature’s calculated pattern, a barrage against my breathing. The smell of the sweet citrus blossoms waft on gentle breezes, ethereal its scent, hellish with its impact on my nose. An Anna apple tree on a hill is abundant with blossoms, explosive with tiny white flowers accented with pink edges, which, ironically resemble the outside of my eyes. The bees swarm, pollinating and buzzing, ensuring that in a couple of month’s time, fruit will be heavy on the branches. I’m heavy on the snot.
I don’t find anything super about this super bloom. Well, maybe the tissues are super, if for nothing other than their size, seeing as how I’ve upgraded from the Kleenex to an entire sheet of paper towel. The roughness has begun to chafe my nostrils, but their increased surface area makes for frequent use a possibility.
A 24-hour histamine blocker I took this morning has failed me, a pharmaceutical lemon. I made it six hours until the red, puffy eyes joined the allegiance of symptoms. Grouped together, I look not unlike a zombie, walking through the springtime meadows only half-alive, juxtaposed to the plants boisterously blooming around me. While the flower fields beckon tourists to come and sit amongst piercing beauty, I ignore their call, enjoy the photographs I see from people online. Even this induces sneezing, and the mere thought of bringing myself within 50 feet of a blooming flower triggers the roof-of-the-mouth itching.
Managing to best Mother Nature for a moment, I took this photograph, which led to a sneezing fit that lasted about five minutes.
Spoiled as we are, never really having a true winter, those of us in San Diego are extremely sensitive to any shifting weather. We are the people wear a sweater when the mercury dips to an icy 68, and complain it’s too hot at 72. That four-degree window is all we are acclimatized to, but even fluctuation in temperature is preferable to the hostile particulates that I find particularly unpleasant.
Nasal spray in hand, the refreshing mist is a soothing reminder of regrowth and renewal that harbinger spring ushers.
If only tissues grew on trees.