Tuesday, October 21, 2008

e.i. in the news...oh my

ahhhhh....once in a blue moon the media likes to drag out the circus tent for my favorite personal impairment, environmental illness. in this article, as usual, there has to be plenty of references to the probability that its a load of made up crap.
its also super typical for any mention of e.i. to be about some quirky, ineffectual, white, middle class woman. i firmly believe that chemical injury reaches everyone, but is especially endemic in lower class communities that are by and large exposed to the worst pollution we can offer up.

but anyway... i love how in this article the neighbors are more concerned with their property values than this womans quality of life....which is where the opinion that she's making it all up comes in very handy.

my god, its too sad that this is still where things are at. I've identified many of my impairments as being related to chemical exposure for over a decade now. that there is still such mainstream resistance to the idea, never mind the reality, that the overwhelming toxicity of our environment is making people sick is just mind-boggling. what a snow job the chemical giants and petroleum companies have done on everyone for the last 50 plus years.

and the real life, on the ground ramifications of the popular, denial-laden opinion that "its all in her head" are frightening. I should know. its related to why i go weeks, sometimes months w/out human touch. why i have such a tiny tiny social circle that hasn't expanded in years. why i'm always on the verge of living under a freakin' bridge somewhere and often wondering how it is i'm supposed to survive the rest of my life.

i don't get ssi checks for having environmental illness. even though that was the case i presented. i get those paltry checks for being crazy, for thinking that chemicals is why i'm such a wreck....its a loooooong string of crazy labels. which i wear with pride, mind you, but the irony is heavy...and a bit frightening.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Erin,
I read the article too, and immediately thought of you, and how pissed you be if you read it.

I've been thinking about Sharon Astyk's (Causubon's Book) invitation for other people to join them in their venture in upstate New York, and wondering if that might be something you could do. I know you have a lot to offer, and so do they.

I hesitate to mention it as I don't want to be interfering, but it did occur to me, and you have been wondering what to do.

By the way, the house looked gorgeous. Las Vegas New Mexico, right? Not Nevada?

Thinking of you as the snow falls.
kalaska

Anonymous said...

Hi Erin--I know that chemical sensitivity is real--I work in a cubicle and when they put in the vinyl carpet protector the fumes it gave off made me sick--my face turned red and I had a reaction---I took it out of the cubicle and my boss told me to put it back in--to protect the carpet!!! what about me?? I took it back out--I work in a hospital of all places and the perfume people wear will make me sick too--also the hand sanitizer they encourage people to use all day long--the smell of diesel will make me sick too. To make a long story short I think that until you do experience it you shouldn't judge someone else.

Just 4 Ewe said...

Ha, I too saw the article and know she is fighting a losing battle. I was on temp disability because of asthma and migrane and red face, in my head disease. I am latex intolerant, I can't eat some food chemicals, it causes burning face....perfume, febreeze and fabric softners choke me...Ask me if it's all in my head? I won't get ssi either because I can work??? In a bubble?
I was interested in your case when I saw you had the same problem...it has been two years since I applied for SSI, closer to three. It will be interesting. So many people are allergic to perfume, what is it with people dousing themselves in it....take a bath!!!!

sighing said...

I suffer from CFIDS and noticed myself getting sicker whenever I cleaned my house or smelled new carpet or walked down the chemical aisle at the grocery store or smelled paint etc etc etc.
I did some research and found out that most of the chemicals in our lives came from products developed during WW2. So now I live my life the way my grandmothers did at the turn of the century.
NO plastic.
NO chemicals.
With one exception. I use coke/pepsi to clean my toilet. It gives me a special emotional satisfaction to pour that sh*t in the can where it belongs.

erin ambrose said...

hey all! kalaska, you're not interfering...i love suggestions! and yeah, the house in in vegas, nm.
just4ewe, it took me about 2 years to get my ssi. the only way to "prove" you have e.i. is to pay 3-4k for these brain scans that map out the brain damage/dysfunction that flares up when your exposed to things. i didn't have that kind of cash so i went with the psych angle...and had a very sympathetic santa fe judge who was familiar w/ e.i.
sighing, i love that you use coke to clean your toilet.
thanks for all of your replies people!
cheers

Just 4 Ewe said...

Seriously 3-4k???? I have been waiting for my court case for more than two years and they say it is so back logged with cases??? I am not going to stop trying and I really feel more and more people are developing this disease.. I am doing much better in a controlled situation and jam chapstick up my nose when someone has to do the fabric softner route or perfume. I learned the chapstick trick from the circus parade they put menthol by the horses noses to keep them from smelling their predators ie: lions, tigers and bears oh my....