For day 6 of the Feel Good Blogging Challenge which I am taking part in, Alex has challenged us to share something which is a little vulnerable.
I struggled to think what to share because once you put something out on the internet it’s there forever! However one thing I feel strongly about is helping others, who like me, have asthma.
I’ve had asthma for as long as I can remember. I think I was officially diagnosed when I was about 5. To start with I just had a ventolin inhaler and would use it when participating in sport at school or just if I was a little wheezy.
As I got older and into my teens it got worse. This is fairly unusual because a lot of people grow out of it, not me. I was always back and forth to the doctors trying out different forms of medicine. For a while they would work but then when the weather changed or I suffered with a bad cold it would get worse again.
In movies it’s always the overweight kid who’s struggling to breathe and I didn’t want people to think that was me. I struggled a lot at school in competing in sports and PE and for a while it stopped me from exercising.
In my early twenties I was referred to the hospital. When they did a chest x-ray the consultant said I clearly have asthma. It sounds weird but it was a relief to hear that as sometimes you wonder – Am I making this up?! He also said I was allergic to a number of things including dust so I wasn’t to vacuum – Fine by me! I would also have attacks when I was stressed or in crowded situations, these were panic attacks which then brought on my asthma.
It’s taken a lot of hard work but I feel like my asthma is the best it’s been recently. There are a few factors in this. The first is I do need to take medication, I take a fair amount but at the moment the balance seems to be working.
The other factors are that I have learnt to manage it myself without being reliant on doctors or my asthma nurse. I listen to my body and if it’s saying no then I don’t go for a run. Now the weather is colder I do all my exercise indoors as breathing in the cold air is a trigger. When possible I keep away from stressful situations or crowds and if I feel a bit panicked I remove myself as quick as possible. I stay away as much as I can from allergens or make sure I am prepared for them. I also take Arbonne’s omega plus tablets which help with inflammation.
Most importantly I stopped thinking about it all the time and feeling sorry for myself. I embraced that I can do pretty much anything despite my asthma. The only thing it’s stopped me doing is a deep sea dive in Australia as they advised against it, I think I would also panic if I was underwater relying on an oxygen tank!
For anyone who is diagnosed with asthma it is a chronic illness but my advice is don’t let that stop you from exercise, having fun and living a life.
Living with any illness isn’t always the most convenient thing but I feel once you embrace that it is part of you things will get easier.