"Lo, Children Are An Heritage of the LORD: and the Fruit of the Womb is His Reward" - Psalm 127:3

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

My Life Just Got Infinitely More Complicated :(

Ever have one of those days where the world comes crashing in around you?  Like the weight of the whole world is on top of you?  I had one of those days yesterday. I kinda felt like that scene from the Wizard of Oz - where the witch gets squashed by the house, and all you see are her feet and striped stockings sticking out.  (That was a witch right?  I haven't seen that movie since I was a kid, and I'm way past being a kid lol).

 Anyway, to get to the point, a little over a year ago, we had the baby tested for food allergies.  We found out he was allergic to eggs, dairy, wheat and peanuts - and we later learned the hard way that the peanut allergy causes anaphalactic reactions.  I recently bought these three cookbooks.  They are wheat freee/gluten free cookbooks, which I figured would give me pretty much everything I needed, as  eggs and dairy are easy enough to substitute.  I noticed several recipes called for Almond flour, and thought it would be nice to know if our one year old could have almonds - thus eliminating a lot of carbs along with the allergy-causing foods.  At the same time, I knew there had to be something else he was reacting to because his eczema has gotten much worse and he's itchy all the time, despite our avoidance of those four foods.

Well, we got a call from the doctor yesterday with the results of the new test (which by the way cost us nearly $500!).  The results were not good.  The pediatrician had expected an improvement in the allergies.  He has been telling us all along this is a temporary problem and should get better fairly quickly.  Well, that's apparently not going to be the case.  He tested "significantly worse" in all categories, and now is allergic to a bunch of new stuff - including almonds, walnuts, and most other nuts, soy and corn.  Corn is an extremely difficult allergy on its own because corn is added to everything (can you say high fructose corn syrup?), but on top of everything else, it's nearly impossible.  Most wheat free prepared foods substitute soy or corn - or both.  A quick look at all our "convenience" specialty items we've bought for him (at great cost) shows why he's reacting so badly - they all have soy and/or corn in them.  So until I can figure this all out he is going to only be eating plain fruit, vegetables and meat.  And then there's the issue of what to cook it in - can't use butter or corn oil, or even crisco - which is made from soy...  So maybe you can see why I'm a bit overwhelmed.
I had started a binder awhile back for recipes he could eat.  Now I'm going to have to go through all that again and basically start from scratch.  I found a couple of recipe books on Amazon that are supposed to avoid all the allergens in each recipe.  I found four that I like but I'm not going to pay $50 to get all of them, so I need to figure out which two I want the most.  It's crazy but it looks like I will have to buy two because the main dish one doesn't have any baked goods in it, and I want to figure out something for bread and crackers for him.  It's especially hard now that he's a year and a half old and sees what everyone else is eating and wants the same thing (like a biscuit).  And the daycare kids eat things all the time that he can't have - crackers, cereal, pizza, etc.

Our pediatrician is a wonderful doctor, but he tells us he is out of his element with this level of allergies, and wants us to see a specialist.  He recommended the National Jewish Hospital in Denver, which apparently specializes in allergies.  They are an 8+ hour drive away.  And we have no insurance.  And this is an ongoing problem. And our eight year old and his dad both have diabetes, which is expensive too.  So yeah, that whole image of the house crashing down and squashing me?  Not too far from reality lol.  But I have a positive attitude about it, and I'm not depressed, as this post may sound.  Just overwhelmed.  But better today than I have been.  I'm not sure how we're going to pay for it all, but one day at a time, right?  This too shall pass.  And I am soooo grateful that we're dealing with things that can be managed, and are not terminal.  I have a friend whose husband recently passed away from cancer - within a couple of months of being diagnosed, leaving her with seven children to raise alone.  And I have another friend whose kindergarten daughter has a degenerative disease which could (and will) take her life at any time.  So given that perspective, I've got a walk in the park :)  And I always did like parks anyway :D

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