“What are Mast Cells?” Street conversation #2.

To return to my conversation when I’ve met someone on the street, we’ve answered the “What is the mask for?” that is inevitably the first question. It’s followed by ‘You’ve got MCAS? Okay…what’s that?” The ‘technical’ answer is here, but that doesn’t help much if you have no clue what mast cells are.  I went… Read more “What are Mast Cells?” Street conversation #2.

A Milestone: A new allergist. 

My journey has been quite unexpected. Along the way though, there are points that deserve a pin on the map. Times when you choose to take a different direction, or you meet new companions. Sometimes they are only seen in hindsight, some that are immediately obvious. The last two weeks have turned things upside down.… Read more A Milestone: A new allergist. 

Mask, anyone? Opening the conversation. 

I have been having a heck of a time getting my thoughts down coherently. I get started, and then before I know it, I’m halfway to writing a book. Im so keen to share my knowledge and experiences that it all pours out at once, in a big jumble. I’m not writing a historical memoir,… Read more Mask, anyone? Opening the conversation. 

What is MCAS?

In the last few years, the information around mast cell disorders has changed quite a bit. There is some confusion about what word is the ‘right’ one. It’s slowly coming together, and if will almost certainly change again many times. The terminology (if not the criterion) is slowly coming together and becoming more universal.. SO, I won’t… Read more What is MCAS?

“So, you’ve been sick your whole life.”

April 2017 A physician said that to me a couple of years ago, and I was startled by it. I’ve had allergies my whole life, but I haven’t always been actively sick. I didn’t see myself as ‘sick’ until November 2011, but looking back, I am realizing that I haven’t been exactly ‘well’, either. People… Read more “So, you’ve been sick your whole life.”

Welcome!

Hello, and welcome. I’m Karen, and I would like to invite you to walk with me along my journey. It isn’t always the easiest hiking trail, but it is rarely boring. When I was in school, Rick Hansen was doing his around the world journey in his wheelchair, to raise awareness for spinal cord research. When… Read more Welcome!

Let’s Start at the very Beginning…

April 2017 So, this all began on November 21, 2011. No, maybe it was August of 1991 (nasty upper respiratory infection), oh- or September of 2001 (when I had reactive arthritis). Maybe it was the flower bee when I was 6 or 7? Well, so perhaps starting at the beginning is a very good way… Read more Let’s Start at the very Beginning…

Definition of ‘Allergy’

“I don’t care if you call it an allergy or a sensitivity. I don’t care which immunoglobulin set it off. All I know is that I’m not getting enough air!” Ahh, the power of language. I said that when I was in the ER, and having an anaphylactic reaction. The nurse chose that moment to… Read more Definition of ‘Allergy’