I knew that becoming a parent would come with his ups and downs. But my goodness! Having your family and friends move your family into your new home while you lay in a hospital bed on the labor and delivery unit can leave you feeling helpless. It was certainly the greatest example of love displayed to me my entire life. I was a brand new mommy and do not think that I could have done any of this without our support system.
Fast forward to the months ahead of troubleshooting breastfeeding, baby finally sleeping through the night, and unpacking those extra moving boxes, I was beginning to feel like a superhero. I was owning this “mommy life.” Schedules, routines, and mommy-tasking had become my new normal.
One day, a good girlfriend and I met up for a play date at Chik-fil-A. My friend who is such a baby doter was gobbling up my silly baby. With my permission, she offered him his first thrill at enjoying ice cream. We had just started introducing solids slowly, so I was fine with this. Ice cream is fun right?! Well, no soon as Chop had taken his first bite, he went off wailing, as his little silly smile turned into a sad face. I watched in horror as he drooled and his face turned red and puffed up. My friend scooped him up in her arm and made a run for the door with me and her kiddos in tow. There was a Walgreens right next door to the Chik-fil-A. We quickly found the aisle that housed Benadryl and I watched as she popped the top right in the middle of the aisle and administer a dose right then and there. I was too stunned to cry.
Little did I know, we were about to embark on the beginning journey of several trial and errors, negative doctor reports, and allergy testing for our son. Over the next several months we had to watch my son react to relatively every morsel of food given to him. His bubbly personality seemed to slowly be drifting into that of a sad helpless baby. After conducting a series of skin prick testing, I had an allergist to jokingly suggest feeding him jarred baby food until he grew out of many of his allergies. She gave me a look of pity, a couple of pamphlets, and very little advice as to how to accommodate my son’s allergies. Another suggested possible celiac disease and wanted to check by putting Chop under anesthesia. I left many of our doctor’s appointments feeling overwhelmed and defeated. I called on our moms to lean on for prayer and support. My sweet Chop needed me. I couldn’t let him down. I gathered every pamphlet given to me, researched, and studied any other information that I found on the topic of food allergies. I had to work through the frustrations of this situation and the constant worries of the “What ifs.” Truck and I both knew that we wanted our baby to lead a normal happy and healthy life.
We were meticulous. We took our time scrounging food aisles scrutinizing food labels. I remembered the first time my little boy ate his 1st chip made with quinoa. The sound of his crunching and munching on those chips made me cry profusely. They were happy tears. For the first time in a long time, I was able to offer our babe foods that he could safely enjoy. Having options we could present gave our family a chance to dream all that was possible for us moving forward.