There are so many things that have “changed” in our world and the way we operate in our daily lives. Long gone are the carefree days when we could eat anything, walk alone in the park, or sit quietly by the lakeshore and just be with ourselves! Even the way our kids go to school has changed. Nowadays there are metal detectors, armed patrols, and ID scanners required for access. Yet there is a potential silent killer that many of us don’t even think about as we send our kids off to school or camp!
Today I read an article on Facebook about a young girl just 13 years old, whose life was cut short because of a severe food allergy. Although the teenager knew of her allergy and was very conscious of what she ate, eating a Rice Krispie treat brought a tragic end to her life. Who knew these dessert treats could contain peanut products? To compound the tragedy, her dad, a physician, did all the right things (Benadryl and EPI-pen) but still could not save his daughter. How devastating this must be for those parents. But this got me to thinking!
Last year and again this year, my son removed the peanut butter crackers out of his lunch box because one of his classmates is allergic to peanuts. At first glance, I was proud and thought to myself how considerate but over cautious because he was the only one eating them. But as I’ve come to understand from him and from my Godson, even having contact with nuts and touching something that the person with the allergy touches can be very, very bad. While I understood the concept of food allergies, I naively “assumed” the worst case scenario would result in the victim requiring an EPI-pen shot and all would be ok. Well after reading this article, my thinking has changed and so will my handling of nuts for my son’s lunch AND especially when interacting with my great-godsons! I tell you, my eyes fill with tears at the thought of causing those precious babies any harm.
I must commend my son for being conscious of his classmates’ allergy and for insisting that he do all he can to help keep her safe. WOW!!! At only 9 years old, the things that kids have to think about and watch out for and worry about! It boggles the mind how they can keep up with everything and still be amazing kids and students.
Yep, times have definitely changed! The list continues to grow regarding changes we must incorporate into our lives on a daily basis. I am proud to make this change and charge each of you, whether you have association with someone with food allergies or not, to CHANGE your thinking and be mindful of others! A simple thought of consideration could save someone’s life! Yes, life has changed for me, for my son and for the young girl with the allergy and her parents. As we mature so much of our focus is on US, and what WE are going through, so we often times neglect to recognize or just simply miss changes that occur every day and affect our lives by no fault of our own.
To read more about this tragedy: http://www.kcra.com/news/local-news/ news-sacramento/parents-of-girl-who-died-of-peanut-allergy-reaction-speak- out/-/12969376/21686610/-/item/0/-/tk9lox/-/index.html.