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I know a lady who moved to Arizona from the northern US. She did so because she had a mold allergy that made her life too difficult to maintain. I often wondered if I needed to move because of issues related to my alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (AATD).

I decided that while this is a good idea for some, there are certain things to consider. The benefits I would look forward to the most would be the warm weather and low humidity. I have heard that Sierra Vista-Douglas is supposed to have high-quality air with fewer allergens.

Those are very attractive things for someone with lung issues. I have consistent asthma attacks and it helps that Sierra Vista-Douglas has a lower cost of living, too. But is the cost of moving to Arizona from here really worth it?

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Here, in Branson, Missouri, the temperature and weather vary greatly. Many of my reasons for staying are mainly related to people in my life and community. There is the risk of contracting Valley Fever in Arizona. That’s really about as big of a risk to my lung health as any disease, except perhaps COVID. Of course, there will always be something going around any place I decide to live.

Personally, I feel like that risk is similar to developing a cold here. They are both going to cause damage to my lungs. There is one I am likely to get again (a simple cold) and the other that I may not (Valley Fever), according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Honestly, Valley Fever is not high on my alert list, because of the craziness of the unstable weather here. This has made life in Arizona seem a lot more attractive. Why not just go somewhere that will make life with lung disease that much easier?

Read about symptoms of AATD

If humidity and perhaps mold in a Midwest home make my life worse, what do I have to lose?  I have thought about what I breathe each day, believe me.  Stopping to take time to hydrate and breathe helps one think about things like this.

I have a few other conditions aside from AATD, such as hypothyroidism, hypotension, and other things that make moving extremely exhausting and call for a large amount of energy to change doctors, jobs, and homes. I have other issues that my doctors and I are currently investigating. They have made a lot of progress with me in recent months.

Hence, wherever I move to, I really need someone around who I can really trust. At the moment, I know no one in Arizona who could help me in an emergency. If I could handle it on my own, it might be a different story.

So, those are a few of my reasons for not moving there right now. Another I haven’t mentioned is that I would like to live in Kansas City too. It’s been on my bucket list for some time, so I have to think about that, too. Why not move there while I’m still young? I mean, Arizona sounds like a great place to retire, honestly. You see, if I move there, I might never do what I have dreamed about doing; and if there’s one thing I have learned through all this, it’s that sometimes as a human with a chronic illness, you just have to take the leap to meet goals and be free.

Right now, I have a better chance of moving to Kansas City, which may not be easy. According to friends who live there, the city has less humidity than where I’m living. There is also public transportation there, which we don’t have much of here.

The great weather in Arizona is something I may not be able to tear myself away from. So, perhaps if I do well in Kansas City, I could make it in Arizona after all. I don’t know exactly where life will take me, but I want to follow that still, small voice. The cost of living in Arizona is one of the biggest draws the state has for me. I don’t like being worried about finances, as I talked about in a recent post. After all, isn’t life about doing the next thing?