I know, many of you could care less, but this is a monumnetal event in our family! When Colleen was just three she and I shared a strawberry Nutri-Grain bar for breakfast. Not 30 minutes later she was turning all sorts of red with bumps and hives flaring all over. AND she was swelling to boot. Of course I woke Greg up, who has just come home from a long early morning of delivering newspapers (not a time in our lives that we like to reflect on, but it paid the bills) and asked him what to do. Well, take her to the ER! Greg stayed home with a very new born Cameron while I took Colleen in. I was told that Colleen was allergic to nuts and berries that day and have avoided both ever since. Well, with her anyway. Her allergy wasn’t so bad that we had to avoid the foods completely, she just couldn’t ingest them. Every year we would deal with all sorts of paperwork for the schools to make sure they knew of her allergy and made sure that Epi Pens were everywhere that she would visit. School, home, both grandparents’ homes, and an extra for travel. Yeah, insurance doesn’t like to cover all those, trust me.
So Colleen is a junior in high school and I’m tired of the school breathing down my neck about getting the paperwork turned in, the doctor visits, the whole rig-a-ma-rol. So, I make an appointment to get Colleen tested again to see exactly what she is allergic to. An appointment with an allergy specialist no less. I’m not messing around. Colleen is terrified of needles so I had to put mommy blinders on and not listen to her and focus on the greater good. I had Greg take her to the appointment. Did you think I was going to go watch my baby be poked? Crazy. Test comes back that she is allergy free! She is told to take the things she thought she was allergic to and rub it on her arm first. If there is no rash or reaction then to rub it against her lips. If, again, there is no reaction then to go ahead and eat it. With an adult and an Epi Pen nearby. Colleen decided to go for strawberries first. Who could blame her? We have 74 strawberry plants in our garden that are still overloaded with fruit. We’re eating them in front of her, and making freezer jam out of them. We’re in strawberry heaven, while she has been an onlooker. Sad.
Here is the process:
Unfortunately the first one she ate was a sour one. Thus the strange look on her face. I can report, proudly, that Colleen really likes strawberries! She has been out to the garden and picked a lot herself, took them as a snack this past weekend to an overnight choir retreat, and she has figured out how to tell the sour ones from the sweet. I am giving a big heavy sigh of relief. Ahhhhh.
Next test, nuts . . .