Still Guessing

There's much going on lately but the MAJORITY of our LIVES revolves around what we eat. So, while I keep up with scouts and parent teacher conferences (over the phone (!) weird?) and preschool snacks and dioramas of falcon habitats and laundry and {FINALLY} an appointment with the principle to discuss Austin's needs for next year, and church responsibilities, and a teething one year old and... well, life, I am constantly watching for allergy symptoms, constantly trying to figure out how to make our old favorite foods okay for Austin, constantly thinking ahead, "what can I feed him tomorrow if I give him this today?" (it's the rotation that is the hardest for me to deal with, eliminating bad foods really stinks but it's doable, rotating the foods he can eat is exhausting)
Austin is doing much better. He's gained a pound in less than two weeks. He looks healthier. BUT still, despite my efforts, TWICE he's gotten hives on his mouth and tonight his lips swelled. So... I go through all these emotions: discouragement, when he gets hives or when I feel like this is all just SO hard; happiness, no ELATION, that something relatively simple like eliminating something from his diet can "cure" him of his symptoms; worry that he will always suffer; worry that he will have a life threatening reaction at school; worry that he'll develop more allergies; worry, worry, worry. Despite my best efforts not to, I still worry.
Today when he got home from school he was wound up. REALLY HYPER. I wondered if he ate something, but his emotions have been just as scattered as mine have been (he's working on accepting this as much as the rest of us - probably more so) so I let it go. We had to drop something off at a friends - Austin ran around her house like a M.A.N.I.A.C. I wondered again, but still, I didn't think I had fed him anything he couldn't have. Then, after dinner I noticed... one half of his lip swollen, and hives dotting the other half. Weird, I know, but that's how his "minor" reactions present. The crazy thing about it is allergens can cause hives up to 6 hours later. So it could have been ANYTHING he ate today - or even if he smelled some Peanut Butter at school, or if the jump rope he used during PE was used by someone who had eaten PB before he used it. I don't know. That's the MOST FRUSTRATING part of all of this. I just don't know. It's just guessing, all the time.
So I go through the things I DO know.
*smoothie with hemp protein (could be the hemp, but I doubt it - yo! there was no "weed" in it!!)
*apple cinnamon crock pot oatmeal (the best new way to make oatmeal!!) this is my main suspect. The oats were not certified Gluten Free and they were generic - much more likely to be cross contaminated with other allergens.
*non-dairy, soy-free, butter substitute I used for his sweet potatoes - the very last ingredient is pea protein - could be that, he's had three reactions to legumes, which the pea is. But, it would be a very trace amount so, I'm not sure.
*the chicken broth I used to cook the quinoa we ate tonight - could be that. it wasn't certified Gluten Free, but I've used it before... not sure
*the "breading" I used for the fish - Austin asked for fish sticks, they are definitely not on our diet, so I found some gluten free breading - the last ingredient, though is MSG. MSG isn't good for us for lots of reasons but, especially because it is derived from soy. could've been that, but again, it would have been trace amounts.
What I have to do to figure it out: I can't use any of my "suspects" for four days, at least, and then give them to him one at a time to see which one it was. I'm really thinking it was the oats. Next time I'm in Boise, near a health food store, I'm going to buy certified gluten free oats and only give him those. Also, I need to get rid of our generic labeled food because they are all manufactured with other foods and likely to be cross-contaminated. I'm trying to wrap my head around the fact that food is just going to cost {A LOT} more now. So many changes and SO many guessing games... blah! I know we will figure it all out, I just wish we could do it faster, and with no more suffering for Austin.
*Sorry, Buddy, I'm working on making things better, I promise.*


shaina said...

Oh, how terrible. Poor Austin, and poor YOU!! I just don't know what I can offer you, except my wonder at how you are managing all of this. You are amazing.

Maynards said...

You would be an AWESOME nutritionist! Your knowledge of food baffles me. Don't get down on yourself, you are actually amazing at what you are doing. Things will happen and Austin will get sick once in a while, but you can't kick yourself every single time. You are doing your best and a dang good job of it.

csmedley8157 said...

Kendra, you have good friends!!

Colleen said...

My goodness, this is such a hard road to tread! I can imagine how the worry must just be so heavy. But you are doing everything right and learning and getting better at it all the time. You deserve a "Mom of the Year" parade! Good luck, dear friend!

And I totally know there was weed in it, you stoner! :)