Do you notice the bee’s knees? That was just an easy pun. Forgive me for I know exactly what I say. I am not a fan of bees. In fact, I am allergic to bees. I don’t distinguish between yellow jackets or honey bees or wasps or other garden variety of winged creatures that sting. I remember my first two stings. The first took place about 39 years ago in October. A bee was under my bedcovers and when I reached to pull the covers closer, it stuck its stinger into my hand. Someone said it was probably drowsy and cold and just trying to keep warm. I say it was an assault with a deadly weapon. The second time was on a summer day while I was waiting for my sister to come and visit at a house I rented with the kids. I was minding my business and apparently I must have trespassed in a bee zone. Since that time, I have always been armed with an Epipen because the world is full of things I am allergic to, and forewarned is forearmed.
I know that bees offer us the path to honey and that they have a very distinguished place in our ecosystem and are very important to the balance in nature. I also know that there are worries about the fragile balance and that bees are a species that we need to worry about. I respect them for what they do. I just am rather afraid of what they might do to me. It just dawned on me that my name for myself as a grandmother is BeeBee. This is what the grandgirls call me. This is how I wish to be referred to. Seems ironic, doesn’t it.
There are a lot of things in the world that don’t agree with me and result in some pretty significant allergic reactions. There are a lot of things in the world that I don’t agree with so there is that balance in nature. I have learned to be very careful about not putting myself in harms way. Asking questions about food preparation and reminding friends and family and cooks that I could ruin a great meal if someone slipped me a walnut or an apple or a peach without my knowledge (and the list is rather extensive), makes me feel a bit like a food allergen pariah or a dork. My mother would often ask me, rather off the cuff “are you still allergic to ……fill in the blank?”. It just reinforces my concern that I have to have my own back since unintentionally it could be the end of life as I know it.
My FHB is pretty considerate of my food thing and yet, not that long ago said that he only wished that he could share a glass a wine with me as he does not like to open a bottle and know that it is something only he can drink. Yes, I have a wine allergy. Not quite sure what the allergen is, but it may be something called “sulfites”. New Year’s Eve, 2006, my FHB went so far as to go to a reputable wine store and ask whether there was something bubbly that we could share to celebrate the new year that was sulfite free. He brought home something that the wine person touted as being the perfect drink to celebrate. Within five minutes I took on the look of some type of alien with bulging eyes and red rings. (I am not trying to discredit or acknowledge that aliens don’t have their place in the world). However, it was not a good look and my FHB was rather horrified by both my appearance and inability to breath without an antihistimine STAT! We have both moved on from that dream (nightmare).
There are far worse things than being allergic to an array of foods that I used to love. It is certainly a romance gone bad. There is still enough good stuff around for me to enjoy that I don’t want to whine about it. Did I say wine?
Eat, drink and be wary.