It’s amazing how something you didn’t know anything about 5 months ago could take up almost all of your free time. It’s too late again and I should have gone to sleep when the kids did, but I’m up, reading, reading, reading, about different types of food allergy tests, what causes food allergies, food intolerances, food reactions, chemical reactions, skin rashes. Do you test hair, blood or skin? Do you wait until your kid is older?
At least the one thing I know, at that Ada’s doctor and every mom I know whose kid has allergies, is that the only 100 percent positive food allergy/reaction test is “elimination and challenge”– what we’ve been doing since we realized Ada was reacting to foods. You don’t eat if for three weeks or so, more or less, then you eat it, then you see if she reacts.
Simple really, and yet oh so complicated.
When will these reactions go away? When will she just be healthy?
We’ve got a lot to be grateful for. She is, in the scheme of things, a very healthy child. Bright, beautiful, chunky, developmentally well.
I don’t know how it feels for a mother who is struggling with a health issue with her child that she has no control over… something that doctors can’t heal, or something that affects brain function or physical development.
My heart goes out to those mothers.
At least the choices are all laying before me.
Quit eating anything, and I mean anything, that could be cross contaminated with gluten and that isn’t naturally gluten free and scrubbed well (yes, gluten has even turned up on strawberries because of the mulch used in the fields). So is Ada reacting to the strawberries, something that many people do have an intolerance with, or the trace amount of gluten?
That’s my big question.
So where was I… yes… the plan is spread before me, and yet she still has rashes and red skin on her ears and isn’t sleeping well.
I’ve got to get tighter on the gluten… no corn chips from Target, even if corn *shouldn’t* have gluten in it. But also, its time to look at tomatoes, potatoes… something that is a common reactant that I eat a lot of but haven’t eliminated yet.
It’s actually harder for me to think of giving up those kind of vegetables or citrus fruits or something than the dairy or gluten was.
I never considered dairy or wheat flour all that healthy… they have some nutrition in them, yes, but they aren’t unarguably good for you like a fresh, shiny, beautiful tomato from the garden. Or a bright red strawberry in the summer.
But food allergies aren’t about health, and that’s something a health nut girl like me has to remember.
So like I’ve said before… it’s just food. All that matters is that my tummy is full and that I’m healthy and have energy, and most importantly, that Ada has no rashes and can get the sleep she needs without tummy aches or whatever it is that she’s feeling that keeps her from sleep.
If I’ve got to cut out some things I like for a few weeks, it will be okay.
I just wish there was that one single reliable test that would give all the answers. But allergy tests are unreliable at best. A negative means next to nothing, b/c false negatives are so common, and a positive will probably just confirm what I know from our diet.
It’s like detective work I swear.
I’m going to get some sleep, take a deep breath, and decide what to stop eating next. Sometimes it’s easy, sometimes it’s hard. I just have to put myself in that right mindset and remember all the wonderful things we have here… I’m lucky to live in a place where I can choose not to eat one thing and easily replace it with something else.
And remind myself we will figure out all her food issues one day. I just want that day to be close.