Six years ago I went to the Allergy Show in London, overwhelmed, anxious and still recovering from my son having an anaphylactic reaction just weeks before.
I soaked up everything, tasted all the free from snacks and finally felt like I was in a room full of people who got it, who has also had their worlds turned upside down by allergies too.
I sat at the learning theatre and listened to an inspiring woman talk about her lifelong journey with allergies and anaphylaxis, who despite it all was eating out, travelling and leading a full and fun life. She spoke honestly, reassuringly and when I went up to say thank you afterwards, she left me feeling encouraged and validated.
She was Ruth Holroyd, still an inspirational allergy advocate and now a firm and trusted friend.
Open, honest and valuable
Last month, Ruth released her first book building on her popular and informative blog, What Allergy. The Reluctant Allergy Expert chronicles her experiences and is packed with so much valuable firsthand experience and brilliant advice. She talks openly and honestly about her anaphylactic reactions and the mental health challenges she has faced because of them.
She also includes lots of insightful interviews with experts including Dr Adam Fox and psychologist Rebecca Knibb, as well as hearing from other a range of people who have allergies too.
Ruth takes you by the hand and leads you through the realities of living with life threatening allergies and goes into depth about how to tackle some of the trickier situations like eating out and dealing with work colleagues.
Facing anaphylaxis head on
She breaks down the steps she went through to help deal with the emotional fallout and what to expect if you do seek therapy to help.
Most of all, she opens up her world to you and shares her knowledge, wisdom and years of practical experience in a gentle and supportive way. She doesn’t sugar coat the difficulties but also helps you face them head on.
This book will leave you feeling understood, reassured and like a friend is guiding you through the maze of allergies, one less fearful footstep at a time.