Thursday, July 12, 2012

The list that changed it all

I was cleaning a bit yesterday and I came across DH's allergy report from 2003. So many emotions rushed over me. I know it's time to redo the tests; some of DH's allergies seem to have gotten worse while others better.

The overwhelming feeling was actually one of gratitude. I've said it before and I'll say it again, I truly shutter to think what would have happened to Ravebaby if we hadn't have known about DH's wheat allergy. The mind, body, and food connection is one I can now see so clearly. That my child goes from healthy running everywhere toddler to sickly fussy baby when she or I have wheat. It is not just a sick kid, her attitude changes. She's a great kid with tantrums few and far between unless she has wheat then she melts down at every little thing. Even DH seems more clear headed and sharp when he stays off the wheat and other allergens.

I watch my child and I wonder how many bad kids are just in pain from an untreated allergy. Since going totally wheat free DH can wear polyester. Growing up he could never wear it without breaking out. Maybe the breakouts where wheat related? If Ravebaby has been allergic to wheat since conception then maybe DH has too. Maybe all of his health problems as a child were actually major allergy reactions. The human body is a hard working vessel but it can only handle so much. One month of wheat exposure put Ravebaby in the hospital for 3 days. The official diagnoses was UTI but I know my baby never even had a cold before we let wheat back into our diets. We kicked wheat back out and have lived happily ever after.

I am not saying that everyone has a food allergy. I am not advocating everyone go wheat free. I am saying that talking to, reading about, and living with people with food allergies that those forever runny noses and/or never clearing rashes seem to have an underlaying cause and that maybe an allergy could be it. Even the best of the allergy eliminating moms can have an allergen slip in to the diet when running around. Ravebaby and DH have both had allergy attacks from thing that should be wheat free, like a milkshake. Don't be afraid to ask what is in something. Don't be afraid to demand and answer. You have the right to know.

I've read articles and blog pieces from parents who only wish they had the chance to ask. "It was just a mild allergy so we never asked what was in the food and now my child is dead. All we had to do was ask." A mild allergy can turn fatal and even mild exposures can start a chain reaction. I hate asking. I am so shy. My child needs me to be brave. My shyness does not give me the right to torture my child. Too many nights have I just assumed the food was okay and then watched her scream in pain all night.

I use to think eastern medicine was bunch of hooey. I totally see it now. We are what we eat. In America we have no clue what we are eating. It looks like a hamburger and taste like one so it must be one for $0.99. Then we wonder why feel sick all of the time. The .99 hamburger has little beef and wheat and lots of wonderful labs worthy ingredients. So I am going to work more towards cleaning our diets. More towards eating whole natural foods. I've complained about the cost in the past but really which cost more the organic apple or the three night hospital stay? We'll see how we do with trying to eat better. I see a lot more label reading and cooking in my future.