Friday, February 13, 2009

The Things We Do for Love

Since it's almost Valentine's Day, it got me thinking about the things we do for love as food allergy parents. Sometimes the things we do are easy, like baking cookies for the class. (OK, sometimes not so easy, I'll grant you.) Or tagging along on our young child's play date, just to be sure they don't have an allergic reaction.

Other things aren't so easy. Anyone who's faced opposition about our child's allergies from the school, other parents or even family members can attest to that. It's very hard to single out your child and also single out yourself for what many people perceive as requests for "special treatment."
It's very hard at times to explain our child's serious medical condition to other people without either coming across as "Debbie Downer" or as too glib. I find myself walking that tight rope constantly--I don't like to dwell on the negatives, but I have to do everything I can to make the people who care for my daughter understand how to help her stay healthy.
It's not easy to watch your child have a severe reaction, undergo uncomfortable medical tests or even be denied a sweet treat that "all the other kids are eating."
Sometimes we get angry when we're not taken seriously. Other times we doubt ourselves--are we doing too much, or not enough?
Not to get all sappy on you here, but we already have everything we need to get us through the hard times of caring for a child with a severe food allergy. Love for our child is what keeps us going. A parent's love can move mountains.

Give your kids a hug and Happy Valentine's Day!


Unknown said...

Amen! :)

Good post! A parent's love CAN move mountains. I don't want to tell you how many supermarkets I have been to lately trying to find elusive Freed's bakery nut-free cupcakes and I finallyfound them yesterday, all so my little guy can eat the same cupcakes as everyone else! Your post reminds us it's good to stop and pat ourselves on the back every once in a while! Thanks!

TxMom said...

I identify with this post so much. My friends like to compliment me on how "above and beyond" they think I go with regard to keeping my food-allergic daughter safe and making sure she feels as much like a normal kid as possible. This drive has caused me to show up at every class party, talk to her preschool teachers almost weekly about activities involving food to make sure the ingredients are safe for her, bake and cook like a madwoman and order expensive, sometimes exotic foods from far away so that she can eat a safe version of the staple foods and treats of childhood, and prepare almost all of her food so I can make sure it's safe. All of these things have actually turned out to be the silver lining of her food allergies -- I am probably a more involved and active parent that I would have otherwise been, and for that I am grateful. It is an everyday activity for us to be in the kitchen together. There is virtually nothing that I am afraid to try to make, and my daughter is always right along side me, standing on a kitchen chair, helping me combine the ingredients and tasting them to make sure they are yummy. And comments such as the one she made the other day to my husband --"Mommy makes the best treats!" -- make my heart full. So while I would still give almost anything for her allergies to disappear, I know our life is definitely better in some ways because she had them.


Mary G. said...

What a great post!

Elaine at Matters of the Heart) said...

All so true. Loved the cookie picture too.

Anonymous said...

Loved the post and the title is very apropos!

Anonymous said...

Great website/blog...I just discovered it today! My 2nd grader is allergic to all nuts. Love the links you've got on here & I think you're in the Chicago area too? Saving to favorite sites! =)