What Is It Like To Live With An Invisible Disability?

Posted by Charyl Williams LLC on

Me outside of my little cousin’s birthday party because a family member started wiping things down with bleach. 😩
I know I’m introverted, and I do my best not to be anti … but a lot my social interactions be like …
“No I can’t eat this.”
“No thank you. I can’t eat that.”
“I’ma gon’ head and head out. bc chest hurts.” (Be it from breathing in perfume, smoke, chemicals, etc)
I first became allergic to the base ingredient in lash adhesive starting in early 2017.
I would later realize, after unknowingly and consistently exposing myself to that chemical, that it is everywhere in everything: nail products, beauty products, hair products, hand sanitizer, cigarette butts, body wash, dry erase markers … and the list goes on.
By June 2019, I realized I was also allergic to fragrance.
Shortly after realizing I had fragrance allergies … I began having allergic reactions to food.
At the time, I was vegan, and I’m not vegan anymore because I would literally only be able to eat air if I still was.
I honestly feel like my diet is more restricted now than it was when I was vegan.
I have to be careful with my carb intake, so I mainly eat brown rice with my meals.
I have sugar allergies …
Gluten allergies …
I cannot eat raw veggies.
I should also stay away from cold foods, but I like smoothies from time to time.
Since 2019, I didn’t eat much fruit besides apples, berries and kiwis here and there.
I’ve recently reintroduced mangoes, pineapples and bananas back into my diet because I can eat them now. Before I couldn’t.
I have to eat my food in a certain order.
And even though, I have a lot going on health wise, I’m still way better than I was in June 2019 when all of these things with my health started happening.
It’s been a long road of self discovery because although my primary care doctor and acupuncturist helped guide me, I intuitively figured out most of what I can eat, can’t eat and am allergic to on my own.
I just get tired of having to police people around me when I’m out, like, “Don’t use that, please don’t spray that around me.”
And I get tired of having to explain what’s going on. And receiving comments like, “Well when did all of this happen?”
“And I just don’t understand where all of this is coming from.”
“You weren’t sickly as a child.”
And the saga goes on.
I have my thoughts about where it came from, and to keep it brief. I would say people pleasing caused all of this.
Because disease is a result of stress, and every time I showed up somewhere I didn’t want to go to, did something I didn’t want to, took a call I should’ve ignored, gave away money I didn’t have to give, entertained people, places and situations that no longer served me long after I shouldn’t have … my body kept the score, until it couldn’t take it anymore.
One thing about everything I’m dealing with, it’s taught me to put me, my health, and my feelings first.
It’s taught me to work smarter and not harder — shameless plug 👉🏾 adornwithcharyl.com
I work from home because work environments are not set in consideration for people who deal with chemical allergies.
In fact, it was a work environment that help cause my allergies and another that worsened them.
I don’t know if I have a point to this post or if I’m just rambling and venting … but I do feel like I’m about to just start staying home. 😩
I appreciate the invites but having trouble breathing and having chest pains just to attend events is really getting exhausting.
Oh … but I do have a point. Celebrate you always, and celebrating you is prioritizing you. If your compassion does not start with you, you’re not doing right.
Here's to many lessons learned, more self love and better health!