Thursday, April 17, 2014

Peanut Butter Jelly Time

When T was a year old our pediatrician suggested we have her tested for allergies, basically because she had a patch of eczema on her face that would come and go. And while she was mostly still only nursing the doctor suggested we see if we could cross certain things off the list.

Well, the first blood work came back and it said she was allergic to peanuts. But because they had not drawn enough blood, they wanted to do it a second time to be sure. Have you ever had to hold a one year old while they draw blood? Not fun. But we did it and so we now had a child that was mildly allergic to peanuts. It explained why anytime we got on an airplane, she would develop a rash on her face. It was from her playing with the peanut bag. No other reactions, just a big, oozy, eczema patch. I was happy to finally have a reason for some of her eczema issues.

But I was more scared...because peanuts or the possibility of peanuts in something is HIGH. I started looking for information about reactions to peanuts and we started carrying around an epi-pen. The doctor said it was a precaution and at two we should have her tested again. We didn't, instead I just became vigilant about keeping her away from peanuts. But she still ate things that "may" contain and when I saw no reactions I just kept an eye on her. I have a lot of empathy for parents that have children with life threatening allergies. I could not imagine how hard it is daily to deal with this because a wrong move could prove to be deadly.

Finally when she turned three, we decided to go ahead and give her another blood test, a skin test and go from there. Both came back negative! The last thing to do? Give her a food challenge. I tried not to think too much about it but last week we had it done.  And she passed. With flying colors. She is no longer allergic to peanuts! I was amazed and even a bit skeptical. And while I joked around that I saw Reese's in her future I can't help but still be a bit apprehensive. Even though I saw her eat peanut butter and not flinch or develop a rash or hives or anything of the sort.

So now we are back to having regular (albeit organic) peanut butter and saying good bye to our faithful Sunbutter companion. Anyone else have a child go from allergic to not? The doctor said about 20% of children will out grow a peanut allergy...I am so glad to be a part of that 20%.

Oh...but we are not free and clear of allergies...she did have a reaction to dogs. And guess what we wanted to get this year? Yep, a dog. I too am allergic to dogs but have usually always had one around. Guess we will have to really weigh the pros and cons of that one, huh?


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