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Living With Asthma: How I Discovered Dolls

Lately, with the state of the world as it is, in warranted panic over COVID-19 (Corona Virus) it has made me think even more on my health condition of asthma. This time of the year it is usually problematic for me as seasonal allergies and flu are major triggers for an asthmatic patient. Adding a respiratory disease like Corona Virus to the mix only gives me worry. I’m currently in pursuit of written documentation on my health concerns so I may give it to my employer, with hopes to work from home until the pandemic has settled.

Nevertheless, my dolly space is a happy place; at least I like to think so 🙂 And even though my health condition worries me, it did have a huge role to play in me finding my love for dolls. I have mentioned this before on my YouTube channel, but never have really went in depth to into details. So, today, I’ll share my story.

My story began when I was born prematurely at only 2 lbs. and a few ounces. A February baby that came in early December, far too soon. Along with premature birth comes with undeveloped baby parts; lungs being mine. Growing up, I spent much of my time in-and-out of hospitals, clinics and doctor’s offices trying to manage my asthma. Both Summer and Winter season posed threats to my health..as a common cold or allergies could immediately make my asthmatic symptoms spiral out of control. Honestly, I am pretty lucky to be alive telling this story.

My Childhood with Asthma

First I guess I should start with What is asthma? It’s a respiratory condition that effects the lungs and air ways. Once this hypersensitivity is triggered, airways are inflamed, or blocked, closing up the breathing passages (bronchi) in the lungs; making it difficult or impossible to breath. Every asthma patient’s triggers are different, but mine is triggered from a wide variety of things from physical activity to allergic reactions of pollen or certain cloth materials (fleece). When I have a severe episode, or asthma attack, attempting to take a breath can feel like shards of glass passing through my lungs. My chest feels “tight” and the sensation of suffocation occurs. The body’s reaction to this is to cough; loosening up the air passages (forcefully) so air can get through.

Fun Fact: Asthma is not contagious. It’s a condition that takes place from underdeveloped lungs at birth, or from damage to the lungs overtime (like from smoking).

Overtime, my asthma was a bit easier to manage, however as a child I had to be careful about the activities I partook in. I wanted nothing more than to run and play with my school friends and neighborhood kids. One of my dreams was to be a cheerleader. Of course, a lot of the things I had my heart set on were out of reach due to asthma. Even owning a family fur baby, like a cat, dog, or guinea pig was out of the question. I steered clear of stuffed toys and animals with fur-like materials, too. My Dad was forced to keep away from me do to his cigarette habit and my Mom dumbed down on her enjoyment of gardening and collecting plants as most flowers were a trigger. Now that I think about it, my family made a lot of sacrifices for my well being and I’ll forever be grateful.

Falling in Love with Dolls

Despite my limitations, my Mom was always sure to spoil me! She made sure I had fun and found other things that I could do that brought enjoyment. One of those things was dolls. I often think about the times I’d visit my big cousin’s home and play for hours with her Barbie’s. Her Mom (my Auntie) handmade the most beautiful and luxurious Barbie clothes for her dolls. I was instantly in love…and low key jealous 😀 It was then that my love for dolls blossomed. It stuck with me up until adulthood.

I never grew out of dolls. If anything, I grew more into them. With each new age group I entered my interest in dolls expanded; discovering more unique (and expensive) dolls. At the time, I had my eyes set on an American Girl doll..the holy grail of dolls to have at that time. They were expensive with prices reaching up to $100! I was in the market to find one second-hand with my earnings from a part-time after school job. It was then while browsing Ebay that I came across reborn dolls. I purchased my first one in 2009.

The rest is history after that 🙂

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