Asthma (from the Greek ἅσθμα, ásthma, “panting”)

I’m in a beautiful country and having probably the best two weeks of my life (cheers to more!), but I am so frustrated and I’m going to rant a little bit.

Basically, asthma sucks.

I wrote about it a little in a previous post but usually I try to tell myself to forget about it and think about other things. When you have asthma though, you can’t forget about it. It’s essentially like trying to appease a small, finicky child living in your lungs that could start crying at any minute and not stop for months. I could say I’m exaggerating, but I’m really not.

My asthma, according to me, is a particular shade of annoying because it’s triggered by basically everything. Small cold? Asthma. Pollen? Asthma. Run too long? Asthma. The list goes on and on. If I am not careful it gets out of control, and sometimes when I think I’m okay it will spring up out of the blue and won’t leave for months.

And let me tell you, it is not endearing in any way to be hacking up a storm in class or at a club, let alone have to awkwardly inhale weird shit and hold your breath for ten seconds when you’re trying to have a casual conversation in your room.

I was alright this summer. I ran, I played frisbee, all with little repercussion besides some tightness if I forgot to take my inhaler before exercising. I came to Budapest ready and excited to continue playing, but within two days my asthma flared up. As of now I am puffing too many steroids as well as taking a nightly pill, which I had been doing before I even left. Seriously I think it’s insane that I need three different medications and even then I am barely managing.

I really just hate that I can’t exercise properly. And that I’ve never been able to exercise properly. Sometimes I ignore it and push through, but I’ve always wondered what it would feel like to only have my body be exhausted after a tournament without also needing several rounds of inhalers in the following days. Or to have a lung capacity that is equal to my running ability.

“I could be so fit if I could just breathe properly” – me, every single time I do any physical activity ever.

It’s a beautiful day today and I got myself up and tried to go for a run along the Danube. Yes, it was as wonderful as you could imagine. But the air quality here is terrible and even as I write this an hour after my run I can still feel how tight my chest is.

There’s that one saying that nobody judges you as hard as you judge yourself. I push myself hard in a lot of areas, and end up constantly judging myself when it comes to fitness because I expect better. It’s terrible, but forgiving yourself for your faults is obviously easier said than done. Sometimes I’ll push myself too hard and will end up with minimal breathing for days.  There are studies all over the place that show asthma and depression have a relatively strong link, which makes complete sense because living with a lower quality of health really fucks with your head.

We all have expectations for ourselves and when our bodies physically (or mentally) can’t meet them we think so much less of ourselves because we compare ourselves to the “normal” society. Most of all, I find it so strange that while trying to do something good for my body I’m simultaneously putting myself in a lot of pain, which ends in disappointment and unhappiness for both my lungs and me.

Unfortunately that’s it. There’s no upside, no silver lining. I have asthma and I hate the shit out of it for many, many reasons. This city is so beautiful but there’s only so much I can distract myself with when trying to ignore my poor lung capacity.

For any of you also with asthma I feel yo pain and I’m always open to commiserating.

Also, anybody want to donate some new lungs to me?

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