I haven't been to a church meeting in our building since the carpet and uphostery were replaced about six weeks ago. This last Sunday, several people at church asked my husband how I was doing. He was pretty direct with them and described the problem, not only with the new carpet, but with everyone's perfumes and other scented products. Some of the people he has spoken with recently have asked if they could come visit me in our home. This presents me with a real dilemma.
Like most people with MCS, I'm pretty protective of my home environment. My own children know they had better be scent-free if they come to visit, and I have requested the same of anyone else who has asked to come. A Relief Society sister stopped by unexpectedly a few weeks ago and asked if she could come in, assuring me that she wasn't wearing anything scented. We just stood in the entryway for about fifteen minutes, but by the time she left I was having a reaction, and even my husband (who has almost no sense of smell) could smell her. I'm sure she hadn't put on any perfume before she came by, but she uses scented products all the time, and the scent stays in a person's clothes and on the skin and hair.
A couple of other good friends, who really understand the problem I have, came by to visit last week. It was wonderful to talk with them, and I didn't have a reaction, but I still worried that I might. I guess I feel threatened by anyone who comes into my home, even friends. So I still don't know what to say to this new request for a visit. It would be good to have some company, but is it worth the risk? I'm thinking about it.