A Choo.

It’s official. It’s not Spring for me until I feel my first pangs of itchiness in the corners of my eyes. Hayfever season is upon us, with my pockets full of Zyrtec.

I suppose it bodes well that I’ve always loved the Stay Puft marshmallow man from Ghostbusters, since I’m pretty much the spitting image of him after my eyes blow up. Ah. Such is life. It’s not going to stop be from being outside to enjoy the nice weather.

But, before I wax poetic about my desire to frolic, I will vent one more little rant, since for me, springtime is not only the time for itchy eyes, but also, the season of the sneeze.

The season of the sneeze. Big deal, you must think. It’s a natural response. It’s like breathing. You do it when you have to. Or do you??

You see, in a perfect world, the cycle would be easy: trees make pollen, pollen makes me sneeze, I sneeze, I blow my nose and then feel better until the whole lather, rinse, repeat cycle starts over.

But for me, I like to pick my battles, and as ridiculous as it sounds, I’ve picked a battle with the institution of sneezing.

I do NOT like to sneeze, or blow my nose in public, and I refuse to do so.

This may sound odd. I’ve been told by CP that he wasn’t aware that you could even take a stance on sneezing. Oh, but you can. Ladies and gentlemen, just like Jerry Seinfeld admitted “I haven’t thrown up since June 29th, 1980!” I too have a confession: I have been blocking my sneezes for as long as I can remember.

How can I stop a natural response to a stimulus to my respiratory system? It’s quite simple, really. I’ve just learned to somehow shut off (or close, I’m not really quite sure what I do) my nose and throat at the same time.

I think I’ve always hated to sneeze. It’s just messy, and your eyes water, and your nose drips. AND–more than anything, I can’t stand when others sneeze. It’s not even so much the germ thing as it is the noise thing. Some people can really hit high decibels when they sneeze. The worst offenders are those who don’t have a warning inhale. “CHOOOOOOOOOO!!!” While they are left feeling better, I’m the one with the quickened heart beat.

And so, I decided to make the world a better place by taking myself out of the sneezing game. I thought of it as helping to defeat noise pollution. I became a martyr.

But, just like Jerry, today was the day I lost my streak. As he said, “Fourteen years down the drain!” I’m not quite sure how long it’s been, but today, while watching the Today show and drinking coffee, I sneezed, and I let it all hang out. Everything–from the little inhales in when you feel a tickle, to the release in which you feel your throat clench was not blocked. It made CP happy, and I suppose it made me happy for my health, since a Googling session yielded Yahoo answers that when you hold in a sneeze, you run the risk of rupturing blood vessels or ear drums, which I doubt are true. Well, I may blow out an ear drum…but this sneeze was to see if I could do it; if I still knew how to sneeze correctly.

Verdict: it’s like getting back on a bike. I still don’t like it, but perhaps it is good to not reckon with the force.

Happy Zyrtec season!

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