Sunday, November 14, 2010

What's Going to Happen?

[WARNING: Overly dramatic. Slightly if not completely depressing. This is a wallowing in self-pity kind of a post, so if you don't want to join in the pity party, don't read further]

I had another allergic reaction.

It came out of nowhere.

I did absolutely nothing to cause it.

I didn't eat corn.

I didn't eat oats or whatever grain I have a mild allergy to.

I didn't rub myself in pollen or cat dander.

I just woke up. Prepped myself for FTX (Field Training Exercise) and arrived at the ROTC building on time.

I didn't plan this as a way to get out of FTX.

I wanted to go. I was warm, ready, and almost excited to go to Camp Williams and rough it that weekend.

But that wasn't Fate's plan for me.

I will admit I cried a bit when I told the Cadre that I wasn't capable of going; that I had to go to the Emergency room. I was afraid of their disappointment. In what, exactly, I don't know.

I cried tears of shame. I couldn't believe I was in this situation and that I looked as pathetic as I did, nose running, face swelling, tears leaking from my eyes. It was pitiful. And I hated myself more at that time than at any time in my life.

If there is one thing I can't stand, it's not living up to my potential and seeing the disappointment on the faces of my leaders and mentors as I fail to reach that potential. And even though all the Cadre had nothing but fear and concern on their faces, I saw the disappointment in me. I could see my future self, my perfect self, the person who I'm striving to be look at me, this poor excuse for a person, and shake their head, as if I had control over my physical ailments.

But I don't have control. I can't anticipate anything that will happen.

It may sound stupid, but right now, after the fact and even during the reaction, I wasn't fearing for my life. I know that the swelling can constrict my airway and I could suffocate to death. But I never fear for my life. I never really have. Allergies can be controlled and stopped. At that time and at this very moment, I fear for my future. I am afraid that I won't be able to do the things I want to do. I'm afraid of the changes that will have to occur to accommodate to these new developments.

Change is hard. Change is frightening. I don't want to change the plans I have for myself. Especially for something so trivial and STUPID as allergies.

There has to be a reason why I have them. Like in the movie "Signs", there has to be some extraordinary purpose to my allergies. Maybe I'll get attacked by aliens made primarily of corn, tree pollen, and cat dander and then I'll start swelling and the snot from my nose will be the only weapon against these strange extra-terrestrials. I highly doubt that...but there has to be a reason, right?

That's my prayer for today: to fully understand why I would be given this problem, this ailment, this plan-changer at such a late point in my life. I've always had minor runny nose allergies, but never until this year have I had life-risking time-to-go-to-the-ER kind of allergies. Why now? Why ever? WHY?

I'm scared. I hate having to carry an epi-pen with me. I hate having to watch what I eat. I hate having to try all sorts of treatments to prevent future attacks. I hate not knowing if this will change my future.

But mostly, I wish I weren't so disappointed in myself for things I can't control.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Quick Update

Yikes. What a crazy couple of weeks. And it's not going to get any easier until after the semester is over. The load will lighten slightly once I get to Thanksgiving break, but until then I've got endless tasks ahead.

And since I'm currently listening to my California Guitar Trio holiday Christmas station on Pandora, I have a few Christmas memories running through my head:

I remember waking up or leaving my room when the whole house was dark and seeing the tree. The initial tree with its lights and ornaments was gorgeous! But then my eyes would wander to the top of the Christmas tree and I'd see that angel staring down at me with its arms outstretch and slightly protruding forward as if she were reaching for me to kill me. I was never a fan of the angel that we'd use time and time again. I know it's an heirloom of some sort, but as a kid (especially in a dark house) it would scare me to the point that I'd have to run by the tree to get to the kitchen to snitch a cookie or two. Or I'd be too terrified to even go to the kitchen. So I guess, mom and dad, your endeavors to stop me from eating food after 9pm worked after all. But now I'm scarred for life. (Family: do we still use this angel? Or has it finally been given away to some other poor, unfortunate family?)


I remember that one year I won the pickle gift. And to all you siblings, it was ONLY that one time. Unlike some of you who think I get it every year because I'm the youngest and complain or something, I have only one once. Or was it twice? Hm. But when I did win, it was AWESOME. Booyah.


The year I got my Easy Bake Oven (no, this wasn't last year...I wish.) was the year that grandma and grandpa Jess were here to celebrate it with us. And I remember making tiny chocolate chip cookies and sharing some with grandpa Jess. This is one of my more fond memories of the only grandfather (and I wasn't even blood related to him) I ever actually knew.

P.S. I kinda want an Easy Bake Oven for Christmas this year...


I remember riding 4-wheelers when we would get Christmas trees from the Odels (is that how you spell their name?). And one year, I think someone put on too much gas when I was riding behind them and I toppled off, doing a sort of flip in the air and onto the ground. But I don't remember getting hurt. Just a little muddy. But I also remember speeding up and down the road with the 4-wheelers. And all the coal that would be around the tree area.

Hm. I should probably stop there. I would LOVE to continue but I have my Doctrine & Covenants class in half an hour and I was supposed to be reading the articles for my Political Science essay due tomorrow. Yay procrastination!

I guess I challenge all of you other bloggers to also post some random Christmas or Holiday memories to start getting festive. And those of you who are like "the Holidays shouldn't be starting yet!" I say this: once Halloween is over, any Christmas stuff and decorations are FAIR GAME. The stores do it, why not me?