Everytime I hug the cat after a long day at work, I can’t help but remember how blessed I am that I don’t have any sensitivities to pollen or other possible irritants. Growing up as a kid, Mom was allergic to everything! She was deathly allergic to cats and all things that had fur or feathers. The only pet I was allowed to have was a fish. anything else with fur plus feathers, so I could only have fish for a very long time. As if that weren’t enough, she’s also allergic to dust, ragweed, pollen, and she’s especially sensitive to lilac. This is unfortunate because she enjoys hiking outdoors for as long as she can go. She also enjoys pets, so now we find her and my father with a couple of dogs that Mom takes on long walks at least once a day. My mom spends some days outdoors most often than others. On those mornings where she has some particularly awful flare-ups, leading to asthma problems, she stays inside. This is better for her because of the HVAC unit they have. When my parents were back in the Northeast, Mom’s pollen irritations were always remarkably horrible. Our house didn’t have central air, which meant no air filters to help keep the air thoroughly cleansed. Now that she and my dad have actual heating and air conditioning again, Mom has a lot less allergy concerns. HEPA air filters can work wonders on pretty much everything, even the things we can’t see that are floating around in the air. She consistently makes sure to change out the air filters consistently to make sure they’re entirely working their best. My parents are always attempting to save some money wherever they can, with the exception of heating and cooling equipment. It’s a good thing too. Splurging on HEPA air filters is not a matter of luxury, but necessity. Someone should always invest in what they need. Thanks to those filters and the full HVAC system, Mom can breathe just fine inside without worrying about allergies getting in the way.