When we first began to discover Penny’s food allergies I was nervous, frightened, overcautious…. You name it! I was so lost. I knew people who had food allergies but I was really ignorant to how they live their lives. As far as I was concerned, just don’t eat it what you’re allergic to! Boy, was I in for a ride!
Living with food allergies isn’t simply avoiding the allergens, although that it a huge part of it.
- I had to learn all the “other names” for the allergens. Do you know how many other names there are for “Milk”? FARE shares a list of almost 30 different names and forms of milk to avoid. Then it shows another list of 15 other sources that could possibly contain milk. Penny has allergies to milk, eggs, peanuts, sesame, and a few environmental allergies. I have a HUGE list of names to recognize. I’ll be honest… I do NOT know them all. The list is exhausting and even though I’ve reviewed it hundreds of times, its simply too many names for me to remember them all. We stick to the same safe foods constantly and are cautious when introducing something new.
- We had to learn to read labels and recognized allergens. Then there is the “may contain” disclaimer *insert eye roll* How doesn’t the manufacturer know whats in their products???
- We make sure to never leave the house without Benadryl, Zyrtec, and at least 2 epinephrine injectors. We never know when a reaction can happen, especially with Penny’s environmental allergies. Being prepared is KEY!
- Our allergist discussed how to determine whether a reaction could be treated with an antihistamine or when we had to administer epinephrine and call 9-1-1.
To cut it short, theres was a million things I had to learn, need to learn, and will continue to learn as time passes. I try to not let “mom guilt” overwhelm me when a reaction happens. And if you are new to this world, allergic reactions happen. They happen when you don’t expect, when you do expect, when you know what happened, or when you have no clue why it happened.
Below is a a short video that shows 3 different moms and their stories concerning living with food allergies. Each mother has children of different ages and each is at a different part with their allergy living journey.
If I have gotten anything out of this, its that I AM NOT ALONE!
YOU ARE NOT ALONE!
YOUR CHILD IS NOT THE
YOU CAN HANDLE THIS!
^^ Youtube Link^^
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