I wish to respond to the letter about peanut allergy. (Dear Eye Rolling Parents, My Kid’s Peanut Allergy Is All Too Real, Brandon Sun, Aug. 15).
I, also, wish to add my comments as a stepmother and grandmother. I met my future stepdaughter when she was eight years old. At a much younger age, she had eaten a candy from her Halloween treats and almost died. A very quick trip to the hospital saved her life.
She never forgot the symptoms nor the fear that ensued in herself and in her loved ones. She was diagnosed as allergic to peanuts/nuts.
For family visits, she was old enough to be watchful on her own and when she visited us we ate no peanut butter nor did we have any nuts in our home. Once I was told that when she looked in our pantry and saw the jar of peanut butter, for her it was like seeing poison. That worry was quickly removed by hiding the peanut butter elsewhere.
Years later after a marriage came the birth of a granddaughter. There was a great concern as to peanut/nut allergy for this precious baby. My stepdaughter was meticulous and read every label on food items to protect her child.
This girl proved to be sensitive to peanuts/nuts. If she could be protected from ingesting nuts of any kind till she was 15 years old, her immune system might become strong and capable to accept eating nuts. An appropriate allergy test would be needed.
Stepping back in time, when our first granddaughter visited with us in her early years, all by herself, I became fully responsible for her safety. Reading every label, every time was a must. Knowing how to use an EpiPen was a must. Eating in a restaurant became a challenge, we had a list of where to go and where it was safe and not safe to eat and yes, it was a must to mention the peanut allergy and a death threat.
Yes, a death threat is very real. Waitresses and even management would bring out bagged food items for us to read the labels and give our view.
Our granddaughter is now 17 years old and last year, she took it upon herself to request the allergy test for peanuts/nuts.
Her mother’s diligence paid off as the test proved that she could eat with no fear of the once dreaded deadly nuts.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition August 19, 2014