Risk taking

Every day that we eat something that wasn't made and grown here in my house we take a risk. Today Janey made a terrific birthday cake for me. It was in the shape of a Power T (for Tennessee). She let the boys scrape the bowl afterwards. David ate a little and decided that he didn't want anymore. That in itself should have been a HUGE red flag! What kid doesn't want to lick the bowl?!?!?

David, as some know, is allergic to peanuts. But there was no allergy warning on this box of cake mix, so there is NO way that there are peanuts in it.

Then his throat felt itchy. And it hurt. And his lips swelled up. And he got hives around his mouth. And his throat felt like something was stuck in it. And he got real tired pretty quickly. Welcome to the world of anaphylaxis.

David's body experienced what I hope is his first and last anaphylaxis reaction.

Wikipedia:
Symptoms of anaphylaxis are related to the action of Immunoglobulin E (IgE) and other anaphylatoxins, which act to release histamine and other mediator substances from mast cells (degranulation). In addition to other effects, histamine induces vasodilation of arterioles and constriction of bronchioles in the lungs, also known as bronchospasm (constriction of the airways).

Tissues in different parts of the body release histamine and other substances. This causes constriction of the airways, resulting in wheezing, difficulty breathing, and gastrointestinal symptoms such as abdominal pain, cramps, vomiting, and diarrhea. Histamine causes the blood vessels to dilate (which lowers blood pressure) and fluid to leak from the bloodstream into the tissues (which lowers the blood volume). These effects result in shock. Fluid can leak into the alveoli (air sacs) of the lungs, causing pulmonary edema.


He's fine now. We did not give him his epipen. We should have. Although he was not in danger because we were watching him so closely and would have administered the epipen if things had worsened, I wish we had given him the epipen. I won't hesitate next time.

As the doctor pointed out, you can't leave you child inside your house and eat only what you grow. Each time you feed him something made outside your house, you are taking a risk. What a wonderful challenge for parents- to decide how much a risk you are willing to take with your children's lives. I despise this.

12 comments:

Family Nature said...

Your short post speaks to me in so many ways. I too am an allergy parent. I know what it's like to watch your child have a reaction, not knowing what will happen next. I know what it's like to want to shelter them from all the dangers, but not wanting them to miss anything.

What an awful experience for all of you. I'm really glad he's okay.

Amanda
www.familynature.ca

RLR said...

I hopped over from Jane Anne's blog. I saw her Twitter update last night, and have been thinking of you all since then.

Thank you for sharing your experience. We also have a food allergic child (peanuts and eggs). I'm going to link to this from my blog in the hopes that those who read our family updates will begin to understand a bit more about what we deal with every day.

I'm so sorry that you all had to go through this, but glad to know that everything is ok now.

RLR

ChupieandJ'smama said...

So frightening!! I'm glad that he's ok now.
Every time I give my child something to eat that isn't a fruit or veggie I get nervous. Even if he ate it 100 times before. Because like you said, you just never know. I joke with my husband that I'd like to get our own farm. This city girl is only half joking....

Ruth Smith said...

I'm so glad your son is alright. We too had a recent similar incident and did not give the epi pen. It's so easy to have a plan, to be 100% in the know about food allergies. But when a child has a reaction-all that planning goes out the window. Anaphylaxis is so sneaky and so NOT text book. Thanks for sharing your story, so others can see how difficult living with food allergies really is.

Martin Jones said...

What a scary story, nothing is so scary as seeing your child hurting. While I depise anything that hurt children, it has been my my geatest joy to know that they did not go through this experience alone. My daughter, before she was adopted by us, was severely burned (third degree covering neck, chest and stomach). Her mother had abandoned her with a friend, the friend abandoned her at the hospital and she spent a year in hospital and rehab without family or loved ones. While you may despise the allergy rejoice in the fact that you have you family and your children have you and Jane Anne. What ever the pain, scare, hurt or trauma having loving family will get you through. We find our joys not just in the fun time but in the pain and troubles we live through. You are truly blessed.

He And Me + 3 said...

I'll say. So does this cause you to believe that he has allergies to other things other than peanuts? Because my kids have nut allergies and eat cake all the time. Hmmm
Glad he is ok.

Jessica said...

Hey Seth,
I'm visiting over from Jane Anne's blog. My thoughts are with you guys, how scary. Sorry it happened on your birthday and so thankful he's okay.

Carey-Life in the Carpool Lane said...

Coming over from Jane Anne's blog...

How scary! I can only imagine how worried the two of you were as you realized what was happening. And I can only imagine how you must feel every time David puts something into his mouth...

Carmom said...

Wow! I am so glad he is okay. That is so scary. I hope that this is the last time you all have to experience that.

Rational Jenn said...

I'm so glad he's fine. And I wanted to thank you for sharing your experience because it is so helpful to read these stories (I am an allergy parent, too).

I've been thinking about you all. Take care!

Sue said...

How scary. Thank you for sharing your story. I too am an allergy parent (dairy) so can relate. I'm so glad David is OK.

Amy Jo said...

Ah man. Sooo scary. You are all in my prayers. Thank God David is okay.