Today we have Lauren from Dilan and Me .
I’ve just popped over to have a peek and it’s a lovely blog very fresh with great visuals.
I have some serious blog envy right now.
Here’s her open letter to all the mum’s that lead an allergy free life with their children…
Dear Other Mothers,
I’m so envious of you all. Of all the mothers of the “normal” toddlers. I watch you all as you arrive at a soft play, or as you enter a park full of children. You find a seat and dump your bags as your children run off into the chaos to have some fun.
You chat to your friends, grab a coffee and a cake, and relax knowing your child is having a great time. You glance over occasionally but you don’t need to worry. Soft play is not a risk to you.
The park doesn’t contain any dangers. Your children are happy and they are safe. I don’t know what that feeling is like, because my child has food allergies.
Other mothers, you don’t know what it’s like to have to watch your child like a hawk, for fear he will pick up something he shouldn’t and put it into his mouth.
You don’t have to worry about him interacting with other children, just incase one gets over friendly and tries to share their snack.
You don’t feel that sinking feeling when the person you’re with orders their child something you know yours can’t ever have.
You don’t need to comfort your child while you explain again that they can’t have an ice cream like every other toddler in the park, because it will make them so very poorly.
You’re not thinking as many steps forward as me, planning safe snacks and alternatives in a desperate attempt to make sure your baby doesn’t feel like he’s missing out.
Your world seems so simple to me, your world without food allergies, and I’m so envious.
Soft play to an allergy parent is probably one of their worst nightmares, full of sticky, milky children eating quavers and dropping smarties. Where you see children happily playing, I see food crumbs and spilt milk. Where you see kids having innocent fun, all I see is chocolate, ice cream and danger for my son. The opportunity for you to grab a hot drink and a sweet treat is a pleasant one, but for me it’s a nightmare loaded with disappointment. You see, as the mother of a not so “normal” toddler, everything feels a little different, because food allergies are always on my mind.
My son, like many others, has Cows Milk Protein Allergy.
When he was tiny he would be sick so constantly that we would leave puddles of it wherever we were. If he came into direct contact with milk he would immediately come out in hives. I was forced to cut dairy and soya completely from his diet, and from mine so that I could continue to breastfeed him.
It was such a scary period and I felt completely helpless.
Now though, as he nears his third birthday, I feel much less overwhelmed thanks to the incredible support I’ve received and all the knowledge I have gained.
I am experienced enough to know what he can and can’t eat, I have figured out all the safe places for us to have lunch and I am an expert on reading labels. What I will never become good at though is facing the disappointment my toddler feels every time he’s reminded that he’s a little bit different.
My eyes start to sting every time I have to explain he can’t have what all the other children are eating; and every time I have to take him away from somewhere he’s enjoying because there are just too many hazards my heart breaks a little more.
Life with food allergies is tough and if I could ask one thing of you as the other mothers it would be this – Bare all of this in mind if you spot a mum anxiously watching her child’s every move at soft play. Bare all of this in mind if you see a mum trying to console her toddler who just can’t have an ice cream to eat.
Think about this if you see a mum nervously wiping every surface before her baby sits down.
It’s really so tough, and just a smile or a nod of understanding could make all the difference to our fragile hearts.
We’d appreciate it so much more than you would ever know.
An allergy mum xx