LIVING

With EoE, Allergies, Asthma and a G-Tube

Teal pumpkin project

If you are my friend, or read my blog, you know what we go through in my house. I have read article after article from people against the teal pumpkin project.
How its going to eventually ruin Halloween.
Why should America bend this way or that for these kids with allergies when its up to their parents to help teach them to deal with it.
Many of the kids with allergies are not actually diagnosed with allergies.
My blood boils.
I have never felt such anger.
All the teal project asks is that you have a bowl of kazoos or stickers for kids with food allergies since they probably can’t eat the candy you have bought. Let everyone know you have a special allergy bowl by placing a teal pumpkin on your porch.
That’s it.
Simple.
If you don’t want to do it, don’t. I won’t judge you either way. My kids will love you to pieces if you do it though. Quit making an already crappy night for kids with food allergies worse. Let them have fun. Let them run house to house with their friends and not worry that a peanut candy slips in their bag. Do you know how much I would love to have my kids run around collecting candy all evening and not once ask “mom, is this safe?” Or “here mom, I know I cant eat this.”. It kills me. Then to get home,  dump the loot and sort it out leaving them with maybe 10% of what they collected.
IT SUCKS
Just like corned beef and cabbage on New Years Day
Valentines day candy
Easter egg hunting and Easter candy
Birthday parties at school
Summer festivals with booth after booth of delicious foods
Forth of July picnics
Having your own birthday when you can’t eat cake
Thanksgiving dinner
Christmas dinner
All the play dates, sleep overs, family gatherings and every other event these kids attend where food is present and they are reminded they are not normal. Places where they face food that if accidentally consumed could possibly end their life.
Why not let them have fun on Halloween just like your kid? You don’t want to buy some glow sticks and paint a pumpkin teal? Fine. Don’t.  Keep your negativity to yourself though.
I will never forget our first Halloween with diagnosed allergies. It was sad once we separate out the safe candy. There wasn’t much left. This year i have two kids with feeding tubes and we live in a new neighborhood.  I doubt every porch, if any, will have a teal pumpkin.  It makes me sad to think about it. So Nathan and I decided we will sort out the candy when we get home. Once that is done we will let the kids trade in all the candy for a small toy. Just something to make them feel a little better. We will then mail all our candy to my cousin serving the U.S.A. overseas. I feel its a win win.
I am not one to voice my opinion like this. I just couldn’t keep quiet any longer. As an allergy mom, I can proudly say I have worked my tail off teaching my kids about the dangers they face.  All while trying to make them feel “normal” at every food event we attend. I think it would be great if neighborhoods and communities could help these kids feel “normal” on a food holiday. Is it their job? No, but I bet June Cleaver would have a teal pumpkin on her porch.

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October 20, 2014 - Posted by | LIVING

8 Comments »

  1. Agree with you 100% Kara – teal pumpkin on my porch. Have fun. Keep the pictures on facebook. Love them. It looks like you live in a beautiful place…take care and love and prayers to your family….

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    Comment by Wanda Polomsky | October 21, 2014 | Reply

  2. Well said!!

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    Comment by Angie Bulkley | October 21, 2014 | Reply

  3. Well said!! I can’t believe the negativity that I have been reading on this matter. Thanks for speaking out!

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    Comment by Tori | October 21, 2014 | Reply

  4. I hear you and feel your frustration and anger about all the hateful posts — posts I’ve been trying (trying but not often succeeding) to ignore and focus instead on the positive, including people in our own community who are joining in, even though they don’t have kids or other family members with food allergies. There’s a lot of great things happening with the Teal Pumpkin Project. That said, it’s hard to grasp why some people are so adamantly against it. It’s not like they’re being asked to NOT give out candy or exclude kids who don’t have food allergies, but simply to do something to include more children. Unbelievable.

    Thank you for sharing your feelings. You are not alone!

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    Comment by Kathy | October 23, 2014 | Reply

  5. What is wrong with people? This is a great idea! I don’t get trick or treaters where I live but my mom and my in-laws get tons. The kids and I will be painting pumpkins to give to anyone who wants one. We have several pumpkins left over from our garden and this will be a fun project for them and a potential tradition.

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    Comment by Rachel Soltis Ellison | October 23, 2014 | Reply

  6. Thank you so so so much for writing this. Since my son was born, he has gone through so much. The first two months of his life consisted of multiple hospital visits and procedures for projectile vomiting multiple times a week , and terrible weight gain (consistant at 3rd percentile). At 2 months old he had two major surgeries. One for a malrotation of his intestine (where part of the intestine twists and if not caught and corrected, results in death, which was the cause of the projectile vomit) , and the other for severe lyrangomalacia (where the epiglottis is flappy and collapses inward during inhalation, which causes airway obstruction). This was all while my husband was deployed in Afghanistan. We continued with the ENT, pulmonology, and GI doctors and he was put on hypoallergenic formula. Around 9 months of age, my son was eating less and less and not gaining weight. I continually went to his doctor to try to find out what we needed to do. It took 6 months and my son losing weight for my concerns to yet again be taken seriously. After seeing the ENT, and GI doctor, and conversations of more surgery, we were finally sent to an allergist. We found out my son is allergic to ALMOST everything. He was diagnosed with EOE just like your children. He is allergic to: whole egg, cow milk, wheat, soy, oat, corn, cashew, fish, mixes of trees weeds and grass, dogs, quinoa, beef, peanut, pork, oranges, tomato, and rice. He is now on a strict diet of only his hypoallergenic formula, white potato, carrots and apples, and we pushed for a certain brand of fruit snack that didn’t have any of the allergens. He is a year and a half old and we are basically resetting his system to eventually add in more items to see what he tolerates. I really want to thank you for speaking out about this. We haven’t really been through all the holidays with the same experiences as you, because he isn’t old enough yet to understand what is going on, or to realize he is “different”. But every single thing you wrote in the article hit home with me (even the donation of the candy to your deployed cousin!). I want to thank you for speaking out against the people who trashed the idea of the “Teal pumpkin”. It may seem like it’s another “fad” where people are over reacting and asking for special treatment, but it is a serious issue that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Children can go into anaphylactic shock from even touching the wrong food article. That is why it is such an issue and this project is such a phenomenal idea. I will continue to follow your blog and I would love to get in contact with you if possible to maybe have some chats about how you dealt with some of the struggles!

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    Comment by Jessie | October 26, 2014 | Reply

    • Jessie, wow!!!!! So much for such a young baby. I would love to talk withbyou. Shoot me an email anytime at livingtheallergylife@yahoo.com or if you’re on twitter im momof3eoe

      Like

      Comment by livingtheallergylife | October 26, 2014 | Reply

      • It’s been a crazy few months for us, but I just sent you an email! Thank you for responding!

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        Comment by Jessie | December 20, 2014


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