Last night I had probably the worst dream I've had in quite a while.
Did you see the news story about the girl who died from her peanut allergy? If not, go here to read about it. Go on, I'll wait.
Everyone caught up? Good. I dreamt last night that someone tied me up, gagged me, and then force fed Gabriel nuts. He was screaming and crying, absolutely hysterical. He knew that he would die. The fear on his face is not something I will ever be able to erase from my mind's eye. I bolted straight up, heart racing and breathing hard, crying.
If he eats nuts, or coconut, he will die. He reacts to the nut stand in the mall, the one that cooks the gourmet nuts. He's had a very bad reaction from a sugar cookie, baked on a baking sheet that previously held nut cookies. The Epi Pen can help save his life. But what about if it's not available, or if he doesn't bring it, or if it misfires? What about when he becomes a teenager, and it's not cool to carry an Epi? What about if friends joke him, tease him, and dare him just to eat one nut?
This is something that I worry about every day. My big kids are good at checking labels, and Gabe is good about asking. He's only 6. What about when he's older? I can't keep him safe forever. It's really scary to know that just one bite of food could, in fact, kill your son.