Kathleen Classen with her medical certificate indicating an exemption from wearing a mask for medical reasons. Photo de Terry Farrell
Kathleen Classen, Black Creek resident, would wear a mask if she could, but she is one of the many British Colombians whose health does not allow to wear a mask
Classin suffers from primary progressive multiple sclerosis (PPMS) As defined by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable disease that affects the central nervous system and disrupts the flow of information in the brain and between the brain and the body
In the case of Klacen, any visual interference in his feet causes immediate dizziness and nausea at the slightest deviation, like seeing a mask instead of your nose, or a slight obliteration of a transparent shield, which causes its symptoms
«For some strange reason, my brain needs to be able to see my feet clearly for mobility to take place», she explained. «for example, I can't walk on tall grass or snow covering my feet. It makes me very dizzy. My body froze in one place so it wouldn't fall
“Due to my MS mark, wearing a face mask is out of the question. I am also sensitive to heat, so masks and face shields can also warm me up, which causes nausea and instability.”
She can wear the mask when seated, at least until his sensitivity to heat begins; Ensuite, he should delete it.
Klassen always takes the doctor's note with her, to enter businesses or public places where the use of masks is required. Although the rating is generally accepted by employees in these locations, it is the public reaction that behaves in a severe way.
“No one asks to see the note”, said Klasen, “I just have a dazzling look, sidelong glances and even a clear disdain for my condition that I don’t even convince that I screamed and swore because I got too close.”
She said an episode, in particular, scared her so much that she would never return to this company during the pandemic
«[approached me] an old man in disguise and very angry. Although I tried to assure her that I am “
Klasen said she would gladly wear an ID lanyard or something similar – something from official sources that people know to be medically free of the mask – but there is currently no such thing
“Maybe a portable lanyard that just says” Exclusion of face mask ” What can only be achieved with the observation of a doctor, just as the signs of disability are given », said Klasen,« This will not prevent all angry people from getting angry.. But maybe I'm allowed to go to a store or public place with less fear of being misunderstood or shouting just because my disability prevents me from wearing a face shield or a face shield.. “
The North Island medical officer of health, Dr Charmaine Ins sympathizes with Klasin's case and says his situation is not unique
«There are a number of different reasons why a person may not or may not wear a mask.», said Eins. «However, most residents now wear masks, especially inside, it is therefore important not to stigmatize or shame those who do not wear a mask. Many will have a legitimate reason “
Klassen understands the stigma very well and even admits she finds it hard to see others without a mask.
«When I see a guy who doesn't wear a mask, even my preconceived thought is« Wow, they don't care about this epidemic, they think it's a hoax and then i stop and think, wait a minute; They may have a legitimate reason for not wearing the mask “so i understand why people think that of me”
I know Dr Bonnie Henry often says «be nice» Classes declared: «I'm afraid the message will not reach some people, and i'm tired of keeping my head down, avoid eye contact with people who wear masks, just because I can't get involved in such things ” “I care deeply about others. I want to be able to smile at strangers without them thinking I'm just conceited and arrogant. I care about your health and I never want to be seen as someone who doesn't take this epidemic seriously”
Kathleen Classen can wear a mask while seated, at least until his sensitivity to heat begins; Ensuite, she should remove it. Photo de Terry Farrell.
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News – THAT – Black Creek woman who can't wear mask feels unfairly judged – Comox Valley Record
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– a Black Creek woman Who can't wear the mask & # 39; Feel unfairly judged
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