Thursday, May 12, 2011

Food Allergy Awareness Week 2011

So I had a couple of things planned for this year's Food Allergy Awareness Week, but gack! Suddenly the week is half over!

Today I'll share with you two videos. The first is an interview I did with Ryan yesterday, talking about his allergy. As always, I learned something about what Ryan does and does not know about his own allergy from this interview, so that's good stuff. It's been so long since he's had any kind of reaction that he truly doesn't remember what might happen. And he seems really stuck on the fact that I won't let him get candy out of vending machines! Who knew?

No, I don't think he's outgrown the allergy; I think we've managed his exposures very well. Though I suspect that we'll do a RAST blood test at some point in the future to see if his levels have changed at all.

Here's the video. I like it because you can get to see some of his personality, his ways of speaking. :D

The next video is a snippet of Diana's Rationally Selfish Webcast from a couple of weeks ago. The question she answers is one I submitted at her request, due to a Facebook blow up over whether or not peanut bans in schools constitute a violation of the rights of the non-allergic kids and parents of non-allergic kids. I do plan to write up my own thoughts about this, hopefully this week. I have a few things to add to what Diana says.

Additionally, I'll point you to a couple of my own favorite food allergy posts from the past.

Facts About Peanut Allergies: a little bit about some of the risk assessment factors, and specifically what Ryan's personal risk is based on his medical history

The Big Peanut Kaboom: the story of the night we gave Ryan peanut butter-chocolate ice cream and spent the night at the pediatric hospital, complete with exciting fireman peopleguys visiting our house!

"Just" Teach Your Children Well: my personal favorite, a somewhat snarky and pointed look at the flaws in the reasoning of people who oppose food allergy accommodations for elementary-aged school children.

Ryan's Food Allergy Awareness Week interview from last year

Morgan's Food Allergy Awareness Week interview from last year (not sure if she wants to be interviewed this year)

I Am Not an Attention-Seeking Psycho: a response to an article by Joel Stein who basically called food allergies a made-up yuppie thing

Joel Stein is an Attention-Seeking Psycho: a response to his mea culpa piece in TIME after his own child was diagnosed with a peanut allergy

So, consider yourself Aware of Food Allergies!

And please help me spread the word. Tweet this, Facebook it, link to the YouTube video, whatever. If you learned something interesting or useful here, please help spread that information to others. I'd REALLY appreciate it. :D

1 comment:

Elisheva Hannah Levin said...

Let's see if this works today! It didn't yesterday.

Thanks once again for a round-up of food allergy awareness articles. Neither of my kids have a food allergy, and I lived in ignorance until a friend of mine (mother of two) died during anaphylaxis due to a peanut allergy. The "safe" Chinese food was not so safe after all.

I really appreciate being made aware of the problems parents of children with food allergies face, and I do not understand the blind refusal to consider the reality of the danger by some adults. I cannot imagine how worrisome it must be to know that there are people who have been made aware of the life-threatening nature of certain allergies and refuse to acknowledge them for whatever reason they may give.

Since my friend's death--now more than 10 years ago, I have learned not to be offended when certain friends want to see packaging from ingredients of dishes I have made for them, or when they politely refuse food that they are unsure about. I have discovered that good friends are allergic to onions, to peanuts, to tree nuts, to fruits from the Rosaceae family of plants (apples, strawberries, almonds, etc.) We understand the need to work around their needs when we plan to go out with them, or have them over. Fortunately, I have kept a kosher kitchen, so dealing with issues relating to contaminated kitchen tools, dishes and silverware are second nature to me now, although now the issue is lives at stake rather than adherence to ritual.

The experience of keeping kosher has also made me aware of how many people view food refusal, and how strange they can become over it. But I have never been told that keeping kosher was going to make my children social outcasts. People will tolerate a religious reason better than a life and death issue for some strange reason!

I have rambled on here--happy that Blogger seems to be back--but I want to finish by thanking you again. I learn something new every time I read one of these posts!