We asked parents on Allergic Living‘s Facebook page  how their child’s allergies have affected their quality of life – for better and for worse. Some of the answers appear in the Summer 2011 issue of Allergic Living magazine. Here are the rest of them.
– No food can be called “convenient” anymore. My life is pretty much consumed by thinking about food.
– We all eat a heck of a lot better than anyone we know.
– I was never a “cook” before our youngest was diagnosed. A lot of our snack foods and convenient prepared “stick-in-the-oven” are now not even allowed in the house. I’m also finding it difficult to talk to some of my friends and family members who just don’t seem to understand the severity of the allergy.
– We can’t be spontaneous. Every outing, party and vacation takes lots of planning.
– Reading each and every label each and every time and seeing the long list of chemicals in processed foods has made me cook healthier meals for my family!
– Play dates are worrisome, and make me edgy.
– Our food selections are a lot healthier because I look at the ingredients and know what’s worth putting in our bodies. Also, my friends are appreciative of the information I provide them when we discuss eczema and other food reactions.
– My husband and I have always been “foodies” who liked to travel and we were excited at the prospect of introducing our kids to our favorite cuisines and cultures. With the arrival of food allergies in our lives, we have lost that spontaneity. Travel anywhere, even to a family member’s home, now requires preparation and anxiety.
– My entire family is definitely eating healthier, more locally, and more organically, and even my husband now likes gluten-free vegan baked goods. I can’t think of a downside except for the intense emotional journey – but I’ve come out stronger and smarter.
– Having the pleasure of associating with allergy parents who go the extra mile to not only keep their child safe but also to pave the way for the families coming behind them.
– Parents of children without allergies who see accommodations as infringing on their “rights” to cupcakes or nuts or peanuts and don’t realize that this is not a power struggle (at least on our part); it’s the work of a parent protecting their child from an invisible medical condition.
– It’s been an adventure in health for our whole family. My husband and I have both lost weight and I feel good about what I’m feeding my family. I thought I was doing okay before this but this was a whole new level of education for us. I pray that my son will outgrow his allergies but we will never go back.