Ice cream store. Several flavors with peanut butter. Nut toppings everywhere.
Sounds like a nightmare, right? It had all the ingredients of an allergic reaction (no pun intended).
I had a pit in my stomach the moment we walked through the door, but the employee convinced me that there was proper segregation of the peanut flavors and that plain ice cream would be safe.
As my seven year old food allergic daughter ate her ice cream I immediately regretted my decision. As I glanced at her, I noticed a change on her complexion. Was she growing pale? Was it my imagination or was she doing something strange with her mouth?
I wanted to make sure she felt ok but didn’t want to scare her…so I ask her a random question and became even more concerned by the lethargy of her response. I asked her what was wrong. She told me she was very tired.
I was ready to give her an epinephrine shot on the spot.
But was it really a peanut allergy reaction? Her mouth felt fine (it was my imagination), she was breathing normally. No stomach pain, no nausea.
After we drove home I called the doctor. By that time she had a fever and it was confirmed: my daughter was just regular sick…and she just happened to get sick at the ice cream store surrounded by peanuts! It was not an allergic reaction to peanuts. Not the right (or wrong) symptoms!
The life of a food allergy parent….
I’d love your feedback. Have you had this kind of scare?