Tuesday, July 22, 2008


A wonderful food item for someone like David who is allergic to so many things but can still enjoy peanuts, peanut butter, and Reese's.

A HORRIBLE thing for my sweet daughter who began demonstrating an allergy/sensitivity at 3 weeks old. (no, I wasn't feeding them to her! I had a can of cashews and she got them thru breast milk.)

Throughout the last 20 months, we have done very well avoiding nuts. We check labels and keep track of things that have caused a reaction even when we didn't think there were nuts in them. For instance, we don't eat (as a family) at Chick-fil-a or Five Guys because they use Peanut Oil. Also, we don't let Sybella eat at Panera; they don't use any peanut oils but she has had a reaction both times she has eaten there. [there may be another allergy that we don't know about....]

But as David says, there is no status quo, things are either moving forward or backward.
Sybella is a toddler now and acts more like a pre-schooler. On Friday, I was taking a phone call and writing an e-mail and trying to get out the door. In about 20 seconds. Sybella went into the Kitchen, opened the candy drawer, got out the Reese's Pieces, opened the Ziploc bag, put one in her mouth, chewed it, and then under (a loud and panicked) command, spit it into my hand. (thanks to her quick thinking brother Connor who screamed for help like the house was on fire! Good Job Connor!)
To make a long story short, 5 minutes later, we were driving to pick up David from a meeting and Sybella started coughing in the back seat. She had strong intermittent coughing for the next 1-2 minutes and had already broken out on the lower half of her face. I began praying of course and shortly, the coughing subsided. She was not having trouble breathing, nor did she have swelling. But, I knew that we had just crossed to another level of allergy reaction, she had not even managed to swallow the Reese's Piece.

About 30 minutes later, we were in the Pediatrician's office getting a prescription for an Epi Pen Jr. and an order for lab tests.
Sybella got 4 tubes of blood drawn and we should have results tomorrow or the next day of her preliminary allergy panel.

So, now the diaper bag has 2 Epi Pen Jr's and Benadryl in it.
After we get back from vacation, she will get an allergy alert bracelet!
From now on, other people worry about gun locks for safety, we will have to have Peanut locks. OK, not really but, ALL products with nuts now go in the highest cabinets and are very secure.

Sybella is fine and wasn't in any danger (this time). Praise God. And although we hope that there won't be a next time, we are realistic and won't be caught unprepared again. I am still amazed at how quickly we moved from simple avoidance of nuts to life threatening defense against nuts!

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