Thursday, April 29, 2010
Children and food allergy don’t mix. What the heck is going on with all this allergy nowadays anyway?! I don’t remember growing up worrying about a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup in the next classroom or friends that had to avoid food-dye-number-whatever. But, nowadays, it seems to be so common place. It’s scary stuff.
Parker has struggled with allergy since birth – breast milk, milk, pears, apricots, strawberries, grapes, tomato, salicylates, eczema. This is what we know of for now. Now that my son is two years old, we have been able to figure some of it out, and we haven’t had a big problem in a while. Now we are wondering about a food dye allergy.
It is amazing to me how much it affects the family when a flare-up of some kind occurs. It is a ripple effect.
The last few days, Parker had a rash around his mouth and hairline and has been grabbing at his bottom. But the worst part is the screaming, yelling, crying, and tantrums that occur when he is not feeling well. He is a downright grumpy boy when dealing with the discomfort of a food allergy.
So, not only do you feel bad that he feels so bad, but you also get a little (ok, A LOT) annoyed with him because his behavior just crumbles into this awful where-the-hell-did-our-child-go intensity that causes me to daydream about nights alone in a hotel room.
Then what happens, is you and your spouse start bickering with each other because of the general irritation in the air. You start to question your reactions to the behavior, whether or not it is food allergy related, when it will stop, when your child will feel better, and whether or not you will murder your spouse in the meantime.
Today, thank you Lord Jesus, God, Allah, the Universe, and Buddha, Parker has got enough of the offending item out of his system to act like our sweet boy (most of the time). And, it is just amazing to me the relief that floods the air. The happiness and comfort permeates the air, and I am instantly back to an all-is-well-attitude, and I love my spouse.
So now we say, “Fuck red food dye, and yellow just in case, and no more gummy bears to boot because God knows what is used for the flavoring, and it may contain natural strawberry and...” you get the picture.
Ugh. Food allergies suck. It is a roller coaster ride that I’d rather not be on, but we are also grateful that is the most serious thing that we are dealing with right now.
Now I get to go watch Survivor in a fair amount of peace while Parker is able to contentedly play for a bit. When you have had a couple days of whining hell, this is as close to heaven as you can get. I gotta go enjoy my reality TV fix!