Peanuts Show Their Ugly Side

Silas was just kissed on the cheek by someone who’d had peanut butter this morning and then had brushed their teeth and washed their face.  This person was a child so she might not have done a good job but it was hours later, I wasn’t even worried.  Nothing awful happened, just a big hive on his cheek right where he was kissed.

This just goes to show how clingy that awful peanut oil really is.  I’m mortified once again.  I’m soooo scared about going to other houses where people have used peanut butter recently and cleaned up as usual but left behind the peanut oil and then him eating something off the dish or whatever.  I’m scared of wash cloths that have gone on to wipe a bunch of plates and counters and utensils.  So innocent in every day life, but so awful for my poor baby.

I feel like an awful reaction isn’t avoidable.  I hate knowing that I most likely will see Silas at some point having a horrible reaction to peanuts.  Having to use the epipen on him.  Calling 911.  It’s awful to know that peanut oil is everywhere…it can be in any place.  So invisible.  I know he’ll react again, I know no matter how much I avoid it, it’s still going to happen.  I’m just hoping it’s the odd hive here and there.  I know my sister’s friend has already used an epipen on her own daughter twice and she’s still young.

Most of the time this peanut allergy thing isn’t on my mind, I’m not constantly worrying about it.  I hate the wall of fear that hits me each time something DOES happen.  I feel thrown off my feet for a few days, I feel like nothing is safe.  Then I put it back into perspective.  There’s danger everywhere that I don’t worry about.  Everyone can die from walking into traffic, the danger is always there but we do our best to avoid it.  We just have one more thing that we need to do our best to avoid in this family.

But I do have an awful time with trusting other people to provide a peanut free space for him.  Leaving it in other hands makes me nausiated.  Not always, but sometimes.  I’m very glad for not always being worried, praise God that I’m not the kind of person that lets herself get overcome with worry on a daily basis.  Except for today.

Today I feel like the mother I was when I first found out.  My heart is there again like I was before, prostrate on my kitchen floor, crying out.  Completely heartbroken for my child.


  1. An awful reaction is avoidable! You can do it.

    R & S, the girls I nannied, both had allergies to peanuts, and also life-threatening to dairy (all kinds) and egg. I don’t remember the exact number “rating” of their allergies by the doctor, but I do remember that it was several times the number that is normally considered where high begins – and when we found that out we all nearly crapped our pants. How can you protect little fingers and mouths?

    Neither girl, to this day, has ever had to use an epi-pen. There has never been a close call. There were times they used benadryl, but never the pen. There were times with hives, swollen lips etc. But never any actual swelling of the airways. They are both extremely sensitive to their allergens, and hey – what’s harder to avoid than MILK and CHEESE?

    It totally sucks. I was scared at all times – how awful it would have been for a child to react while in my care. I was terrified, but they were protected because of my fear. Can’t imagine what it’s like as the mother of that child – but it’s in your very, very capable hands. It is avoidable.

    Dunno if that was encouraging. Not trying to give advice (I don’t have kids, after all :). Just trying to encourage. You can doooo iiit. Because you’re an awesome momma!

  2. Oh boy. On the first full day of our honeymoon, DH had a reaction to … something … and scared the crap out of me. Fortunately we were three blocks from a hospital. His reaction was so severe, we were there for 5 hours while they pumped him with steroids and benedryl. It was the scariest moment of my life cuz I had never seen this before. Normally he’s allergic to walnuts… but the only thing he had that day was a fruit smoothie. Scary stuff. But you’re aware and now I am and you will teach your son all about it and he’s going to be fine… just a little more cautious.

  3. Hi – I’m another mom of a kid with PA – he’s 9 years old now – and it is always scary when something like this happens, but it is also amazing how adaptable kids and parents are! Things do get easier after a while.

    My apologies if I’ve posted this here before, but there’s a great free message board for families dealing with peanut allergy and other food allergies that you might find useful:

    I’ve found the support there to be invaluable.

  4. I understand. Especially about the fear of trusting other people with the allergy. It gets a bit easier as he gets older and can take more responsibility for it himself. But then I feel bad for him that he has to worry about it. We can only take it one day at a time and try not to let the worry overwhelm us like you said. Very well stated.

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