I don’t intend for this to become a food allergy blog. I really don’t. But it is so much a part of my reality right now that it is almost all I can think about. That and the teething baby monster that stays up all night and cries all the time.
My adventures in PPD have prepared me for being an allergy mom because I’m used to being terrified all the time. That part is not new for me. It is new for my husband and everyone else but I already have a Ph.D. in being afraid for my children.
What is alarming for us, is that E’s worst reactions have started like an asthma attack. Asthma and coughing followed by hives. Ugh. We probably could have/should have given him the epi pen on Saturday but we didn’t. We gave him Benadryl and albuterol and next time we’ll do the pen first. The incredible thing is how little information we have gotten from the doctor. I’m not trying to bash the doctor but is it normal to just say “He has multiple severe food allergies. Here’s an epi pen. See you in four months!” I mean…is that how it goes? I hope not!! I’m obviously on the lookout for a different doctor. I’m sure this doc is great for some but I’m the type of helicopter mother that needs every single piece of information that you can give me. And then some more.
I’ve basically been on the internet since his diagnosis. I am hoping to earn my M.D. by doing 10 million hours of research. Husband is also researching. It’s all we do. Even while we re-watch “The Office” at night, we stop fifty times to discuss food allergies and asthma.
I’m going to assume that mostly this is normal for new food allergy parents. And if there is any silver lining at all, it is that our parental intuitions are working and we are even more comfortable with the decisions we’ve made for our son. His intuition seems to be working too as he only eats turkey bacon and everything free crackers at this point. And I mean everything free. Crackers made of rice and salt. Yuck. He has some sort of crazy texture issues with fruit so I try to juice for him daily.
It is so, so hard though! All of the things I hold to be true about nutrition are really difficult or out of the question now. Butter? One of the healthiest fats on the planet! He can’t eat it. Margarine pumped full of chemicals? Fine. Coconut oil? Questionable. The more refined it is the safer it is for him to eat. Vegetable oil? Fine. I don’t keep vegetable oil in the house and I never let anyone eat it. It just makes me want to bang my head on the wall. (If there are any real food families with similar experiences, I’d LOVE to hear how you coped!!)
So I guess you can just expect a lot of food allergy posts for a while or maybe forever. I am truly thankful that I have been slowly learning to cook over the past year or so. My idea of cooking used to be: open spaghetti sauce, heat up, add noodles, eat. Now it’s got to be all homemade all the time. Otherwise my child can’t eat it. Not that he eats anyway.
There is ONE thing that I feel a little bit triumphant about. Cupcakes. I’ve been buying gluten (and everything else free) cake mix and then adding vegetables. Shhhh. The last batch of muffins are spice cake with applesauce, carrots, kale, swiss chard, and quinoa. Just don’t tell the kid. Yes they are a little chewy but he likes them and will eat them and that is absolutely all I care about right now.
So we have slightly moved past denial in the five stages of grief, which I think apply nicely here. I was fine and confident and in denial for about a week and then boom. I have not reached acceptance. Soon maybe?
In the meantime, I have a couple of great sources of information given to me by the two food allergy mom friends that I have. If you have more info and resources, please share! And I will share things I find as well.
Thanks everyone for sticking around during a really rough few months.