We had such a great time down the shore this past week.
If you were following along on Instagram story or Snapchat (@lauryannraik), you may have seen some of the fun stuff we did!
I went down with my mom and the kids Wednesday, then Mike met us over the weekend and we were able to have a date night at Olon by José Garcias on Saturday night. It was amazing!
As I mentioned in the past, my son, Jaxon has a tree-nut allergy.
He reacted to cashews, which promoted an ER visit followed by an allergist who tested him across the board.
His highest initially were cashew, walnuts, pistachios, and his lowest was hazelnuts and peanuts (which is a legume, not a nut).
We have been living with this allergy since Jaxon was 14 months old.
He is turning 3 at the end of August and recently did a blood test to see his levels.
The results were really great!
Initially, at diagnosis, I was prepared for him to be living with the the rest of his life (only 9% of kids outgrow tree-nut allergies, statistically).
The fear, the heartbreak, and constant preparation and calling companies and restaurants just became routine.
A couple of months ago the allergist called me himself to tell me he thought there was a good chance Jaxon outgrows his allergy.
I got really emotional and could barely hold back tears before I hung up the phone and called my husband.
We aren’t out of the woods yet … we have a long way to go … but there is hope!
What we need to do is, go into the office Thursday morning bringing peanut butter and crackers, or another peanut butter heavy snack.
He eats it there.
We sit and wait.
If it’s all good … he eats more.
We sit and wait.
We are going to be in the office for about five hours to make sure he doesn’t have a reaction (which, with an almost 3-year-old is a challenge in itself).
The first challenge is finding a peanut butter that has a dedicated facility, with no risk of tree nut contamination.
So many peanut companies now offer other nut butters … luckily many have warnings but others do not.
I wanted something without any added junk … just peanuts.
It was so strange buying peanut butter. It has been forever since I had any in the house.
Even before Jax’s allergy we used mostly sunbutter (I got Ella used to that as a baby because of allergies in school), and I would use cashew butter or almond butter myself.
I used to LOVE Crazy Richard’s. They have been around forever, and remember back in the day being the only PB I could find that was just peanut butter.
Still unsure, since they do sell almond butter, I called and spoke to a sweet woman named Joanne who answered right away.
When I told her my situation, she very confidently answered that I had come to the right place. That there is absolutely no contamination in their peanut butter … and I think she said one of the owner’s son’s had a tree nut allergy (I missed who it was but it was someone from the company), so she said she totally understood where I was coming from.
Someone in a mom group that I am part of told me that since peanut butter is so filling that they also brought Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups to use at the end of the food challenge, since PB may get to be too much (the sweets may entice him to eat more).
Mike actually suggested that I make Jaxon these peanut butter cups I used to make all the time.
These can be messy if not kept cool, since they have coconut oil, so I am considering my options.
If anyone has any ideas for something simple, healthy and kid-friendly (maybe some sort of PB cookie ball recipe?) .. I am all ears!
We are very nervous … I am maybe MORE nervous that he will pass the food challenge and that we will be feeding this to him regularly to build him immunity.
I mean, this is a REALLY GOOD thing, but my nerves come from the not-knowing, and re-training my brain to think he is not going to go into an anaphylaxis from eating this.
Also the cross-contamination thing … because we still have a long way to go before we get to pistachios and cashews.
I will keep you posted!
Wish us luck!
Have you ever gone through this for yourself or with a child?
I have a friend whose son is extremely allergy to eggs .. when they did the blood test showed it showed low, but at the food challenge he reacted immediately, vomiting, hives, etc.
So I am prepared that this may be the case with Jaxon, and prepared to do the best by him either way.