Tuesday evening the kids and I were at the grocery store. Jed was entertaining himself by looking at the candy, which, as I’ve already said, the poor child has no concept of. He doesn’t want to eat any of it, he just likes the pretty colors!
He grabbed a Snickers bar off the rack and held it out to me, saying “Daddy lunch!”
Well, how sweet is that? So I told him to hand it to the cashier so we could get Daddy a treat.
He handed it to her, saying “Here you go, lady! Daddy lunch!” I just love hearing my little boy speak! Melts my heart with his sweetness, you know?
So we got home and gave Darrel his candy bar, telling him the story of how Jed wanted Daddy to have a treat. Aw…
And somehow, in the “eat dinner, take showers, read bedtime stories, clean the kitchen, put the kids to bed” routine, we lost track of the Snickers bar.
Wednesday morning, Jed woke up before me and went to play in the living room alone. He wasn’t up for long before me, based on the timeline, but it was enough time for him to find the Snickers bar, figure out how to open the package, and eat 3/4ths of it!
I discovered my sweet son standing in the middle of the living room with chocolate smeared all over his face when Zac and I woke up.
Honestly, at that moment my thoughts went “Oh man! The fructose is going to wig him OUT today, and we’ll probably have some bad diapers with blood in them. This is awful!”
Then I got the candy bar away from him (he didn’t even put up a fuss!) and went to throw it away, but I wanted to see exactly what the ingredients were before I tossed it. I needed to know what I was up against, after all. And after reading the ingredients?
I felt like throwing up.
You could not POSSIBLY create a worse food for Jed. The only thing I can imagine would be worse for him would be a big bowl of milk and melted butter, with a jar of peanut butter, three cups of sugar and a few eggs mixed in for good measure.
As a reminder, he has a confirmed IgE allergy to EGG, a probable IgE to PEANUT, a DAIRY intolerance, and has FRUCTOSE MALABSORPTION.
This is what I could read of the label (he didn’t open the package nicely, after all):
Um, yeah. Every kind of milk, many types of sugar, peanuts and egg! Dear Lord!
So I got out our “allergy kit” (with the Benadryl and Epi-pens) and kept it close while we got ready for speech therapy. We actually ran a little late because I spent the first 30 minutes I was awake watching Jed like a hawk.
He seemed okay, but he screamed when I washed his face. Normally he loves when I wash his face, so this is unusual. It reminded me of the sensitivity he got during his last peanut reaction, so I was on guard.
Nothing else happened, so we went to therapy. I warned his therapist of his Snickers exposure and told her I’d be close by if she needed me. We went over his Benadryl and Epi-pen treatments when we started therapy months ago, but I wanted to assure her I wasn’t going to be far away and to remind her of what she needed to do just in case.
When I collected him at the end of the hour, he was still just fine! His therapist said he was a little “off” today; more argumentative and belligerent than usual, but that after he’d shoved a little kid down and been told “no, Jed, we’re soft with our friends” he went over – without prompting – hugged the kid and said “Sorry, friend!”
So, yeah, the fructose was already messing with him, but at least his sweet personality was still lurking beneath the surface!
He had a poopy diaper later in the day and the fecal occult test was…odd. It could have been a “trace” positive, or it could have just been the lighting. I really couldn’t tell. But I did see something reddish in his stool, so, I don’t know. We’ll keep an eye on it.
I carry his allergy kit with me everywhere we go, obviously, but yesterday I always made sure it was at the top of the junk in my purse, instead of just “somewhere” in the bag.
And at one of our errands we ran yesterday afternoon, Jed once again grabbed a Snickers bar off the check-out rack. This time, though, he said “Jed like!” with a huge smile on his face. Oh, no!
I told him “Oh, you like those? That’s good, honey! But you know, those aren’t good for you. They’ll make your tummy hurt. Why don’t you put it back, sweetie?”
And – thank goodness – he DID!
Hmm…didn’t pitch a fit when I took the candy away in the morning, didn’t pitch a fit when I said ‘no’ in the store…do you think he liked the taste but realized it was making him feel badly?
Well, a Mama can hope!
And I’d like to punch the marketing genius behind cash register candy displays. Now that he’s gotten a taste of candy, I’m sure I’ll be having many fights about not buying candy in the future.
Just one more place where my kids can’t be Normal. Just one more unnecessary reminder of how restricted our lives are.
I was a nervous wreck all day long, and Jed – aside from moments of normality – really was “fructosed”. He was argumentative, whiny, annoying, and downright un-Jed-like. I’m truly grateful that is ALL that Snickers bar seemed to do to his body. I know it could have been much worse!
Well, today should be better. And I love Darrel, but he can buy – and eat – his treats at work from now on. Even if my sweet boy wants to be giving and treat Daddy, I’m going to say no. Mama can’t take the stress!