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Dishing It Out

| Related | April 8, 2013

(My sister suffers from exercise-induced anaphylaxis. It is a relatively rare condition that can cause her to break out in massive, full-body rashes if she physically exerts herself too much. A number of distant relatives have come to visit for Easter. Many of them don’t really know us ‘kids’ very well, and thus don’t know all of our peculiarities. This includes my sister’s condition. I’m washing the dishes we used during dinner, and my sister is keeping me company when our aunt comes in.)

Aunt: “[Sister], help your sister with the dishes.”

Me: “Oh, it’s no problem; I’ve got them.”

Aunt: “No! [Sister] has to do something as well.”

Me: “Auntie, no offense to you or [Sister], but I’d really rather she doesn’t. I’m a professional chef, and I can get kitchen work done quicker and easier without anyone else crowding me at the counter.”

Aunt: “Then one of you wash, and one of you dry.”

Me: “There’s a lot of dishes. The workload from a party this size could cause problems with her anaphylaxis.”

Aunt: “Pfft, she’s just lazy. That’s why she’s getting fat while you’re in such good shape. You girls used to both be so pretty.”

(My sister is sensitive about her weight, and runs from the kitchen holding back tears.)

Me: “God-d*** it Auntie! She’s not lazy; she has a rare condition which among other symptoms, could prove lethal if she exerts herself too much. [Sister] exercises regularly, and it’s a struggle, but she and I do our best to work out as much as possible without pushing her too far.”

Aunt: “But—”

Me: “No, no buts! She’s my sister, and I’m not going to put up with anyone insulting her, even family! I am not going to force her to do work that could cause her to break out in rashes, or worse, die. Now get out of my kitchen!”

(My aunt flees faster than I’ve ever seen her move. I’m able to quickly finish my work, and then go find my sister to soothe her emotions.)

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