Stop and smell the coffee

My personal journey dealing with Anosmia
I debated back and forth about writing this, to a certain extent I feel like I’m whining. Who knows, maybe this will help me. So, hear it goes….

Back to the beginning-
Back in spring of 2019 me and my husband revamped my sewing space. We planned it for months. I never really used the room to it’s fullest because I like to be in the living room with my family. All of my craft items were in the craft/office/bedroom and my sewing machine was in the living room. We decided to knock down the conjoining wall and make the room part of the living room. It was going to be epic! I’m not going to talk too much about the room, but I’ll add the video from the makeover.
In the video I reference that we were sick throughout the week. We actually got really sick. We should have stopped and went to the doctor, but no, we powered through it. A huge mistake looking back. My room is absolutely amazing, but came at a cost. It took us a while to bounce back, start feeling like ourselves again.

Now the Anosmia part-
A couple weeks later me and my family went shopping. One of the stores we went to just had their floors redone. As soon as we walked in my husband and son started gagging. I mean, it was like the smell was taking their breath away. I’m standing there looking at them completely not understanding what’s going on. ‘Can’t you smell that?” they ask. No, no I can’t. Then it dawned on me. I haven’t smelt anything – ANYTHING for some time. There were foods that I had that was bland, I just figured the recipe had changed. Cleaning supplies that I was doubling up because I couldn’t smell it. Over seasoning things. Call me hardheaded, but up until then every time something wasn’t quite right I rationalized it.
I now knew I had a problem. I started smelling everything, and still nothing. There was nothing. Just a blank slate. I made a doctor’s appointment. In the meantime, I started doing some research. I was freaking out on the inside, but trying to make light of it. It was about 4-5 weeks after the room revamp that I made it to my doctor. She really didn’t have any answers for me so she sent me to an ENT specialist. This actually took places a few more weeks later. Now two months after the room revamp.
I don’t know what I was expecting. A magical nose spray that would clear everything up. I just knew that this was going to make everything ok. What happened was no where even close to that. We talked, he did use a nose spray, used a camera, x-ray, and scans, and then one final “smell test”. The smell test I think bothered me the most. Two vials filled with liquid. He wanted me to breath in and tell him what they were. I truly tried, eyes closed and breath in. NOTHING. I asked him what they were, the first one I don’t remember, but the second was coffee. COFFEE.. I didn’t smell the coffee. One of my most favorite smells in the world was gone. He then starts to tell me that my sense of smell may be gone forever. That when I had gotten sick I damaged my smell nerves. I am looking at him in complete shock, speechless. He continues, telling me things I need to do to protect myself such as making sure my fire alarm is working, have other people smell food when I’m not sure, start paying more attention to expiration dates, I may need to change what foods I eat based on texture vs taste. Did you know about 70% of taste is flavor? I continue staring at him nodding my head. I had no idea that this could happen. I only did a small amount of research before, but me trying to stay optimistic decided to see what the doctor had to say. I did not see this coming. He did say there was an ever so slight chance I could get my sense of smell back, but not to get my hopes up. In the end I had a good cry.
On a side note- when I first started telling people about this they have several things to say. I know they are only trying to make me feel better, but I have lost something, some part of me and who I am is gone.
I know there are many bad odors that won’t be missed, but there are so may wonderful aromas. Smells that can trigger a memory, scents that make you feel safe, loved, and happy.

I am going to leave the story here for now. It has taken several twists and turns.
Do me a favor, stop and smell the coffee.


Wife, mom, grandma, gamer, and teacher. I've been quilting all my life.

3 thoughts on “Stop and smell the coffee

  1. Jeanie, my friend, I am so sad for you. I remember the renovations and I remember your getting sick. I can’t image how stressful and sad this must all have been for you. Thank you for sharing, I genuinely hope it helps the emotional weight you have been carrying. *hugs*


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