Food Allergy 101: Ignore.

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What if my food allergy was a real, live person? And what if I could talk to him about what he's taught me over the years? Every Thursday, I get that chance...

Blog #271 — Mr. A., my allergy, has been eagerly trying to reach me all day after I didn’t show up for our weekly meeting.

First came the texts.

— “Hey!”

— “Just sitting here waiting for you at the restaurant. Guess UR running late.”

— “Thought we’re meeting today?”

— “guess we had our schedules mixed up.”

— “U OK?”

— “Let’s reschedule tomorrow. Call me.”

— “Hey!”

After the texts came the voicemails, long meandering ones that I don’t care to transcribe here.

He knocked on my apartment door. He stood outside one of my classes. He even tried to give me a handwritten note folded into a paper football. It was something out of third grade.

Truth is, I was too busy today to meet with him. Busy in a good way. Busy spreading my message of CAN. Busy with classes. Busy with life.

Around midnight, the texts start up again. Three texts, actually, in rapid succession:

“Why are you ignoring me today?”

“Why are you ignoring me today?”

“Why are you ignoring me today?”

Smiling, I finally decide to respond, sending him three messages in rapid order before turning on “Do Not Disturb” and drifting off soundly to sleep.

“Because.”

“I.”

“Can.”

 JJ Vulopas is a senior at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. An advocate for young people, JJ has lived with food allergies his entire life. He is the author of the children's book, Land of Not. You can read his daily blog at www.thelandofcan.com. Follow him on Instagram & Twitter @thelandofcan.