Anytime someone who is vaping rolls their eyes at me when I ask them to stop due to an allergy I have, I, being incredibly petty, have to use all of my will to resist the urge to purposely have an allergic reaction by standing next to them so they are forced to face the consequences of their actions when they see that, gasp, yes, people actually are allergic to their precious disgusting chemicals.

I know cats have a stigma of being evil little robots who care for nobody but themselves. I don’t deny that there are some out there like this. But in defense of the large majority of darling cats who have been given a bad name due to the wicked few, I would like to tell you a story…

I am asthmatic. I’m not as bad as some; my asthma is generally well-controlled, and I don’t have much trouble with it on a daily basis. However, as all asthmatics know, getting sick becomes a nightmare. Even a small cold can turn into a days-long asthma attack, one that is very painful, and very annoying for me and those around me. The asthma cough sounds like an ill seal at best, or an angry moose with a nasal condition at worst. Y'all with asthma, and y'all with asthmatic friends, know exactly what I’m talking about. The bark. The hack. The Cough Heard Round The World. It’s painful, it’s loud, and it doesn’t stop. Even the rescue inhaler can only do so much to calm it. It just has to run its course with the cold.

Well, this week I caught the crud, and in the past few days it deteriorated into The Cough. Last night, I took some NyQuil to try and stave it off for as long as I could, just to try and get some sleep. That meant that for a few hours, I was cough-free. After that, I was still doped up enough to sleep through some of it. However, by 2am the sleep aid had worn off and The Cough woke me up. Since lying down makes it worse, and I didn’t want to wake my sister, I sneaked out of my bedroom into the living room, where I sat on the recliner and proceeded to hack up a lung while I waited for my next dose of NyQuil to kick in. That is when I noticed Simon.

Simon is a Russian Blue with a masterful resting-witch-face and an attitude to match. She (yes, she’s a girl, that’s another story) is old, fat, proprietary, and attitudinal. She isn’t shy about telling you when she is displeased, and does so with a loud shriek and some teeth or claws thrown in. She is convinced she owns the place, and owns all of us in turn. She is particular about where you can pet her, like most cats; and, like most cats, she loves her sleep and hates to be woken up.

And of course, my hacking woke her up.

Attempting to whisper an apology in between bouts of coughing, I noticed she was getting off her perch atop the chair nearby. She stretched, made a little squeaking sound, and trotted over to me.

I expected her to demand petting as payment for having woken her precious sleep, but she did not. Instead, this traditionally cranky dragon of a cat did something that amazed me.

She began to purr loudly, and sat herself directly on my aching chest. She kneaded my sternum softly, and nosed my chin as if to say, “I’ve got this, you sleep.” Even though I was still coughing, and bouncing her horridly in the process, she remained settled on my chest right above my diaphragm, purring loudly so that it vibrated through my ribs. I don’t know what magic spell she was chanting between her boat-like purrs, but within minutes my cough had subsided and I was able to sleep.

I didn’t wake up until about 4:30. When I did, it was to discover that my lap and chest were devoid of Simon’s presence, and I was coughing again. As I started coughing once more, I heard her familiar “I’m here” squeak from the area of the water dish. I heard some hurried lapping, and then her heavy gallop across the floor. She flumped onto my lap again, and resumed her purring and kneading. She had evidently been doing that for the past 2 hours, and had only left to get some water. Hydrated, she had returned to take care of me.

So yes, she has her share of evil, jerk-cat moments, but I can no longer pretend that Simon is entirely heartless. For that matter, I now refuse to believe that about any cat. Just because they act like a jerk doesn’t mean that they don’t love you.

The lack of diversity no one talks about:

Characters with:

- Epilepsy

- Diabetes 

- Psoriasis

- Rheumatoid Arthritis

- Inflammatory bowel disease (crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis)

- Cystic Fibrosis

- Celiac Disease

- Hypothyroidism/Goiter

- Hyperthyroidism 

- Asthma 

- Paramyloidosis

- Sarcoidosis

- Multiple Sclerosis

- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

- Spina bifida

- Lupus 

And many more.

You know that episode of iCarly where Carly’s granddad wants her to move to Yakima? And near the end of the episode when she has said goodbye to her older brother, Spencer, who was her guardian, he’s sitting on the couch all sad and jumps up and meets her at the door to their apartment building and hands Carly’s inhaler to her and shes like “My asthma inhaler? I havent needed this since I was really little.” and Spencer says “Take it anyway” and Carly’s like “Really, I don’t need it.” So Spencer turns to their granddad and hands it to him and says “Take it. You know… You never know.” that shit makes me cry just thinking about it. I fucking cant. Like don’t bring that shit up unless youre prepared to see me cry.

On Doctors and Dates

I just broke up with my allergist, and the reception lady seemed really surprised. But I have the same rules for doctors as I do for dates which is that I need:

1. To feel respected 2. To feel like they are listening 3. For them to be polite

That’s my minimum of what I need in any sort of relationship, and this doctor was 0 for 3, so I dumped her.

I’m not all about telling people how to live life, but mine improved so much when I adopted these rules and I highly recommend them

Dear People Who Smoke

I don’t know if you have considered this but stop smoking in areas where people are forced to wait at. Don’t smoke at crosswalks. Don’t smoke outside doorways. Don’t smoke at bus stops. People with asthma or other breathing conditions or people that idk DON’T WANT TO BREATHE IN YOUR CIGARETTE SMOKE are trying to get to places and need to be able to breathe. Stop smoking in crowded areas. stop smoking in crowded areas. STOP FORCING NONSMOKERS TO SECOND HAND SMOKE. 

Why Do You Hide?

“Why do you hide your illness?”

Maybe it’s because people don’t even believe me when I tell them I’m sick.

Maybe it’s because I can feel people become uncomfortable when I talk about it.

Maybe it’s because I’m tired of having to disclose extremely personal medical information to random people. 

Maybe it’s because I’ve had doctors doubt me. 

Maybe it’s because I’ve had people I love doubt me. 

Maybe it’s because I’m looked down upon when I need help.

Maybe it’s because of all of the times it’s been implied that I’m just not trying hard enough to get better.

Maybe it’s because it’s easier to pretend I’m okay than it is to explain that I am in fact in pain this very minute even though I’m out of the house because if I didn’t do anything every time I was in pain I would literally never do anything because I am in pain every minute of every day.

Maybe it’s because I’ve had my sanity questioned when I try to open up.

Maybe it’s because I’m terrified of the harassment I would face if I identified myself as disabled.

Maybe it’s because I know you’ll never understand unless you experience it (and I would never want you to).

Maybe it’s because I’m so freaking sick of hearing the judgment in healthy people’s voices. 

Maybe it’s because society has made me feel that disabled people are lesser than able-bodied people.

Maybe it’s because I don’t feel important enough for anyone to care.

Maybe it’s because I feel like nobody would want to be around me if they knew how bad things really are.

The lie of privacy rant

My mother would gossip to the other parents about my stomach pains, the rashes, my bowel movements and bed wetting when i was a child.

I begged her to not share these things but she would insist maybe one of those catty women would know a way to help.

My grandmother laments my strict diet and shelves of medication to her bible group and I simmer when they make jokes at dinners.

My father complains about the medical bills to his buddies, I hear him on the phone telling a man I’ve never met about the anxiety attacks I have always hidden from my friends.

My sister explains to the people ar the grocery store why I walk so slowly, why I limp, why my breathing is so loud even when i ask her to stop.

My grandfather asks people to pray for my crooked spine, my failing lungs, the way my joints have begun to give up.

They do it because they need to explain why I’m not normal, they do it to vent about the burden.

They say it’s public information since anyone could see.

But that woman in the store didn’t need to know about my bowel movement when i was 13 and burning red with embarrassment.

The church ladies didn’t need to know the amount of pills i take in a day.

I deserved an increment of privacy.

But if you’re disabled in any way you are seen as a small child. Private information is nonexistent, they speak like you can’t hear them, like it doesn’t matter how embarrassed you may be.

And that sucks.