I know many of you were following our food challenge last week on Facebook and Twitter . I want to thank you all for you kind, supportive words and prayers. If you weren't following lets just say, it didn't go so well.
This was our second food challenge. We went for our first one last fall (when I was on hiatus from here). It was for cashews. I was a nervous wreck the night before for many reasons. For years we have been telling our son do not eats nuts! Now we had to tell him eat these nuts. Needless to say it took two weeks prior to the test to convince him to do the challenge. Since I didn't think he would eat them, I made cookies with cashews in them after he went to bed. I was terrified the fumes from them cooking would make him have a reaction. I must of went into his room 20 times to check on him. We went in early to do the challenge. He ate the cashews plain while I wanted to throw up. And NOTHING! He loved them and is not allergic!
Cut to last Thursday. We were going in to challenge walnuts and pecans. Since the first challenge went so well. I was so calm (too calm). I slept well and everything. I didn't get nervous until he had to eat the walnut. He ate a piece smaller than a jelly bean, and announced he wasn't allergic with this big grin on his sweet face. We all laughed and I took a breath since I was holding it.
About 2 or 3 minutes (yes that fast), my son turned to us and said his mouth felt funny, like oatmeal. I couldn't understand what he meant by oatmeal. Then a few seconds later he said his tummy hurt and started clawing at the neck of his shirt. Then his fear set in. The terror in his eyes was too much for me to see. He started panicking and the nurse and Dr. were there in a flash. The more questions we asked the more he panicked. His top lip started to swell a little. It was barley noticeable, but the Dr. and I saw it. Food challenge over only minutes after we started.
Benadryl to the rescue! Once we told him he was going to get medicine he started to calm down even before he took it. We were lucky that he didn't need epinephrine. The Benadryl took care of it. He did get a little lethargic but nothing that worried anyone too much. We had to stay for 3 more hours to make sure he was OK.
Once I knew he was OK, I had to leave the room to catch my breath and let a few tears spill. The minute he said his mouth felt funny I wanted to throw up. That feeling didn't go away until the next day. A four year should never have to feel that fear, and a parent should never have to see it. He knew it was bad and saw it in my eyes as well.
However there is a positive to this story! We've spent years talking to him about his allergies. As he gets older we get a little more detailed but noting too heavy yet. He's only four. The moment he felt something different he knew to tell us. He knew something was wrong. He recognized what we had been telling him for years. He did what he was taught. As a parent I'm so proud of my little man. Of all the things I could fail at, this wasn't it. We are doing the right thing. Teaching him one of the most import lessons in his young life. We did our job as his parents, and it feels good.
After we got the all clear getting ready for some pizza!
Do not attempt to do a food challenge at home without consulting a Dr. This was a medically supervised food challenge in a medical facility.