The past couple of days, weeks even, haven’t been easy on me. My asthma got noticeably worse after an infection, breathing has become hard, I’m constantly coughing and I’m at a point where I’m starting to lose my voice. My doctor has upped my medication, prescribed new medication and done plenty of blood tests to look for other causes, but things aren’t getting better. I know where this is going, as I’ve been here before.
I’ve been an asthmatic since as long as I can remember. I was born with it, I grew up with it and I’ll grow old with it. It’s part of my life. It’s part of who I am. I want to share part of my story, using three topics that have been central in my battle with asthma: inhalers, needles and technology.
On a rainy day, almost twenty years ago, I was diagnosed with asthma. Back then I didn’t really know what that diagnosis meant, the only thing I understood was that I had to take inhalers twice a day. They looked scary and tasted awful, and I didn’t want to come near them. Sometimes people told me I would get rid of the disease, that I would magically become healthy again. They gave me hope.
But over the years my lungs only became weaker. They started to hurt when I was running, biking or swimming. I had to stop taking part in certain school activities, such as physical education. I had to be careful when riding my bike. I had to sleep with a rescue inhaler. And I started to appreciate the medication more. They helped me bike and win. They postponed the pain. They saved me during asthma attacks. But I didn’t manage to get rid of the disease, instead my condition became progressively worse.