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Personal Turning Point

This masktroversy reminds me of my days as a high school “competitive” swimmer. Remarkably, as an asthmatic, I was moved into the category of ‘distance’ swimmer. Understand, this wasn’t by choice and regularly refused only to be forced on me. For those of you familiar with the sport “my events” were the 200 free, the 500 free, and the 400 free relay. The asthmatic. From time to time, during the 500 free … I would throw an ‘open turn’ to the distress of my coach, parents, brother and team mates. They knew that I could flip turn. But, mention of asthma and not being able to catch my breath was “blown off”*. If you wanted to find me after the event … I’d often be laying on the shower room floor with all the showers on “high hot” to create steam to help me reopen my airways and ‘catch my breath.’ I quit my senior year.

My point? People don’t understand a problem that they can’t see and that doesn’t affect them. When you see someone without a mask take a deep breath and remember that 8,000,000 adults and 9,000,000 children suffer from asthma. There are millions of others who suffer from any number of obstructive lung disorders that struggle to breathe each and every day. You wouldn’t berate people using canes, walkers or wheel chairs ... would you? If you’re one of the millions who suffer from a breathing disorder … don’t wear a mask that endangers you to get the approval of others. Speak to your physician about plausible safe alternatives. You’ll get over their disapproval and live to tell about it.

I did. _________ *See what I did there?


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