Tis the season and parties abound, and I turn down many invitations for one reason.
I've even passed up chances to go to musical events at very pretty venues very near me (like a certain winery in Billings) *waves to ericcaptdrake
It's not that I don't like you, or someone else who is invited, or your cat.
It's not that we have different religions and I'm being stuffy.
It's because I have a health challenge, I've been told it's an allergy.
I've gotten up and left restaurants and taken my order to go if it was too late to cancel it.
I can't go to (most) bowling alleys, which is a pain b/c DH likes to bowl and the one time we went, I was sick for two days afterward.
I've had to quit going to bars, even the ones with outdoor patios.
It's not that I don't like you, or (as has been postulated on insufficient evidence) that I think I'm "better than" someone else.If I'm exposed to cigarette smoke, my eyes start watering and swelling, my throat begins to burn and swell, and THEN I notice the scent. (Next day, I may or may not be able to keep food down or stand up.) I know there's a problem before I know what the problem IS. It's NOT psychosomatic.
At Lilies' War, I had to leave an OUTDOOR class because the wind was blowing the instructor's cigar smoke right at me.
Febreeze doesn't help, that makes it worse. Hotels, take note: Odor-masking sprays simply ADD TO the particles in the air, they do NOT reduce them.
"But Zia, we don't smoke inside!"
No, but the smoke is in your hair and clothing and lungs and seeps out through your pores and into your couch and curtains and carpet, and from there it wafts up and gets me. Not as bad as if you allowed smoking inside, but enough.
And if your smoking area is somewhere sheltered that everyone has to walk through to get in? It hovers. I was SO glad when the factory added an entrance away from the smoke shack. This includes places like hospitals and stores where there's a place to sit-n-smoke right at the entrance -- I've gone clear around the building looking for another entrance when the cloud was thick enough to see.
"Oh, let's take my car! We can roll down the windows!"
Again, it's already in the upholstery and dash and carpet. Even if I rode with my head out the window like Ol' Duke, it would get in my clothes and into me. I know, it's been tried.
And you're not getting in my car unless it's an emergency, and I don't mean that you've run out of smokes and want a ride to the 7-11. An emergency involves bleeding or high fevers or broken bones, and then you'd probably prefer an ambulance anyway.
I do appreciate invitations to the parties, and I'm not being rude when I decline -- I DO want to be there. I just don't want to be miserable while I'm there and sick for days afterward.
And I do NOT think you are necessarily a bad person if you smoke, regardless of prior experiences I may have had
I'm not about to tell anyone they can't or shouldn't smoke.
That's your choice. My public persona believes strongly that you have the right to smoke, but also that I have the right to not be basically poisoned by your choice. Therefore, I stay away from places where I know I'll be exposed to more than I can handle.
It's like seafood or nuts, right? If you're allergic to nuts, don't eat 'em.
And ask if I've been eating them recently before kissing me ;)
If you WANT to quit, I have an aromatherapy blend that I'll gladly share with you. Concocted BY REQUEST, and it has helped several people at last report.
I've actually spoken out publicly in favor of allowing Springfield bars to continue to allow smoking inside. There's got to be a limit somewhere, right?
Oddly, cigarettes and cigars affect me the most -- pipe smoke is somewhat less an irritant, and cannabis affects me hardly at all. Do NOT ask how I know this last bit as I won't tell. (And no, as far as I can tell, I don't get a "contact high" from just being in the room either.)
Of course, if you want to appear hospitable but don't want me to show up, you now know how to ensure that! .)