Saturday my two oldest girls went on a fun adventure with Grandma and Auntie (and family). After watching a cousin compete in a drumline competition, they went out to dinner, then planned on coming home. I met up with them about half way to their destination to drop off the girls and Grandma, who is visiting, and as they pulled out I had a bad feeling. That was at 3:15pm.
At 8:15pm I get a call from Auntie saying that Little Woman is having an anaphylactic reaction. They were stopping on Cub to get Benedryl because Little Woman didn't have anymore left in her purse, what would I like them to do? I advised them to head to the nearest ER where I would meet them. If she was showing any signs of respiratory distress, they needed to administer the Epi Pen. Little Woman was in excellent hands. Besides a calm, cool and collected Auntie and Uncle, Grandma was there, too.
I scooped Wee One out of her sleepy little bed, raced the little boys out to the van and called Dear Husband to tell him where I was heading. He and Little Man were out at Boy Scout Camp. I had to deal with this one on my own.
When she got out of the car, I didn't expect her lips to be so swollen. She'd had some trouble breathing, felt tingly (low blood pressure), but nothing she felt was too serious. No airway closure. No tongue swelling. No need for the Epi Pen* (or so I thought). After waiting it out a little while, we went home with Benedryl, Zantac, her Albuterol inhalor and Zyrtec as the meds for the week with no physical activity for 24 hours as she could suffer from a secondary anaphylactic reaction.
Here's the deal. They ate at a restaurant we frequent (used to be weekly) monthly. She had what she ALWAYS had. I called and talked to the manager and we cannot figure out WHAT caused her reaction. Did they spread peanut butter on something, then use the knife to butter her toast? Did her bread stick get baked on a sheet that was used for peanut butter cookies? Had they scooped some ice cream that had peanuts before scooping her ice cream? The rotten thing is, we don't know and we probably never will.
Kids with anaphylaxis at her level can react to 1/100 of a peanut. Perhaps the peanut butter was on the knife, but it wasn't washed well. We'll never know. So goes the life of having a peanut allergic kid. I hate peanuts.
For those of you reading this that think peanut allergies are over blown and that parents like me overreact have never ran into the ER, covered in their child's vomit as their child's body desperately tried to purge itself of the offending allergen, carrying their child who was not breathing, unsure whether they would get her breathing ever again. When you are in my shoes, you can judge.
To all my friends that have peanuts or peanut butter in their houses...please allow me a bit of time to decompress before I come to visit again. It's not you, really it's not. It's the peanuts I hate. And, again, I need to get over it. I will. It always takes me a while. Until it happens again.
*Please offer up a prayer for me that I handle these situations a little better than I did. I won't go into details. I just need prayers and I can always improve.