[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.