Confusion and DelayPosted: October 13, 2010
Being a 2-year-old boy, my Certain Little Someone is a huge fan of the TV show Thomas and Friends. A common phrase heard on the show whenever one of the trains is bad or in trouble, is “You have caused confusion and delay”. That phrase describes perfectly what I felt after leaving our allergist’s office last week for his annual check-up. Not that anyone in particular caused confusion and delay… it’s just the product of living with allergies. Or maybe just living in general.
The confusion came from a lengthy conversation I had with the allergist about the nature of food allergies and the likelihood of our second child also having allergies. The data regarding food allergies is confusing and conflicting. For example, the allergist said that studies show that children in Israel eat peanut products from a very early age and have a low incidence of peanut allergy. Yet they avoid sesame until the children are older, and sesame is one of the top allergens in Israel. And yet, in the United States, as exposure to sesame increases, the incidence of sesame allergies is rising to the point where it is now ranked #9 in top allergens. Confusing. One thing he was very sure about, though, was that avoiding top allergens during pregnancy and nursing is not going to reduce the risk of our second child having food allergies, not one iota.
Another element of confusion is that, based on my Certain Little Someone’s tendency to have allergies, I should continue to avoid peanut and nut products until he is tested again to them and passes an office food challenge, even though he is not technically allergic to tree nuts and probably not peanut either.
I’m confused. Are you?
The delay is because, based on the fact that my Certain Little Someone has reactions when accidentally exposed to various allergens (specifically milk and egg), the allergist decided not to do any allergy testing this year. We’re going to wait until he’s 3, when most children begin to lose their sensitivity to their various allergens. *Sigh* I was hoping against hope – and against reason – that we could at least get blood work done and find that maybe – just maybe – some of his numbers have lowered. My heart wants to hear those magic words even as my mind acknowledges the common sense in the allergist’s decision. It is extremely unlikely that any of his allergens have abated by anything more than the smallest amount.
So… confusion and delay. I’ve resigned myself to both. Hopefully, as scientists and other experts continue to research allergies, we’ll learn better how to prevent and manage them. And hopefully, over the next year, my Certain Little Someone will begin to lose some of his sensitivity to his various allergens.
~Why am I discouraged? Why so sad? I will put my hope in God!~