Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Hannah Mai's First Allergy

The day seemed to be going as any other. I had my bowl of cereal for breakfast, went for a walk around the neighborhood, and met up with some friends for Starbucks. I took my car to get it checked out (after a fender-bender on Friday) and hung out with my husband James while we waited. Oh, and I forgot to mention, I finished his Starbucks as well. Things started to settle down once we got home. I fed Hannah Mai and shortly afterwards, went to change her diaper. Not only was it a poopy one, but it was mixed with blood. I debated whether or not I was imagining things and asked my husband what he thought it looked like. He confirmed my “diagnosis” and I immediately called the pediatrician.

About two and a half hours later, we were walking out of the pediatrician’s office with the verdict – an allergy to a protein in cow’s milk. She’s nearly three months old, why didn’t we know this sooner? Thanks to my day full of dairy (remember the Starbucks?), we found out the hard way. Considering she’s breastfed, it means her mommy, aka yours truly, has to either cut dairy out of her diet or switch to formula. Can I do that? What about my morning cereal? What about my chocolate? What about my beloved Starbucks?! After the initial shell shock I tried to think logically. Well, there is soy milk, I could substitute. But would I like it? How long would it take to get used to it? Thoughtfully, my wonderful neighbor Amy promptly sent her oldest son over to my house with some to try. And it was not all that bad after all. She also informed me that they make it in many different flavors and I was sure to find one I liked. Okay, so that problem is solved. Now what about my chocolate? Here’s where my friend Kelly comes in. Her oldest child is also allergic and she’s been substituting for several years now. She reminded me that there are brownie mixes and cocoa recipes that don’t call for milk. She promises I can still get my chocolate fix.

The pediatrician said he sees about two to three patients per year with this situation and Hannah Mai’s diaper was “textbook” perfect. Great. Look what we get to brag about! I read that only one to three percent of children actually have an allergy to this protein. Fortunately, I was assured that most children grow out of it by the age of one and many of the remaining ones grow out of it by three. Then there are poor kids like Kelly’s son who get it for good. Where will Hannah Mai fall?

It should be an interesting transition, that’s for sure. I always says I’m up for a challenge if it’s able to be overcome. I guess this is my newest!

Take care,

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