The big one….

Last Saturday, I went upstairs to start my grad school homework I neglected all day because of our five kids’ sports schedules. Just 20 minutes later my husband came into my office worried that John might be having a reaction. I expected to go downstairs and put a plan into action. But what I didn’t expect was to find my son at the bottom of the stairs, eyes red, teary and panicked. I’ve always read about “the impending sense of doom” in some cases of anaphylactic reactions. And here it was, the look of doom staring right at me. In that one brief moment, I KNEW.

I started hammering him with questions as I jumped on a chair to reach the medicine cabinet over the desk, looking for the Epipens:

Does your mouth hurt?


Does your tongue feel funny?


Does your throat feel like it hurts?


Does your tummy hurt?


Do you feel like you are going to throw up?


“I’m scared mom”.

It’s OK John, keep talking to me.

At the same time, my husband relayed the story of what he ate – a Popsicle with dairy in it. He bought it earlier in the week for the other boys, and John grabbed one for dessert after checking the labels.  Contains Milk was not bolded in the list, but he failed to see the first ingredient in normal typeface – Nonfat Milk. John blurted out that he ate half of it before his mouth started hurting. He felt the reaction almost immediately, but didn’t want to tell his dad yet. So he got a paper towel and tried to wipe his tongue clean first. He said he felt worse by the second and was forced to tell my husband he was having a reaction.

I grabbed the Epipen and firmly injected it into his outer thigh. Michael, his four-year old brother was by his side looking up at him in stunned silence. David and Matthew, (9 and 8) sat on the couch nearby, but I was too distracted to know for sure what their reaction to John was. He said started feeling better almost immediately but I knew we had to get him to the hospital right away.

This is where I made a huge mistake. In a panic I was worried that if I called 911, they’d take him to the hospital nearby which is NOT where I wanted him to go (I had a horrible experience there a year ago and vowed never to return). I wanted to drive him to a much better hospital 15 minutes away. As I drove, John told me he still felt sick and his throat started to hurt again. In that moment I knew he should have been in an ambulance getting monitored instead of sitting in the front seat of my car.  I was so angry at myself – I should have known better. Lesson learned, and will never be forgotten.

When we got to the ER, it was of course, packed with all sorts of trauma; people throwing up, a knee gashed open from an accident, an elderly woman who was too weak to fill out her own paperwork and a little boy who split his eyelid open. I knew John’s vitals needed to be taken right away. When the woman behind the glass window asked me, “Can I help you?” I became the Shirley McClaine character in the film TERMS OF ENDEARMENT – the part when she started going crazy on the staff so they would give her daughter pain pills. Though I didn’t go that far, I did let the nurse know in no uncertain terms he needed immediate attention and told her what happened. I thought he might be experiencing a bi-phasic reaction. The nurse stood up and called a doctor right away and John’s vitals were immediately monitored. His blood pressure and pulse ox were subnormal. He was dizzy, quiet, and weak. He started shaking and shivering violently. He was nauseous and wanted to throw up. He look terrified and confused – wasn’t the injection supposed to make it all go away? I tried to explain to him, yes, many times it does. But sometimes the injection simply buys time, and the body continues to react.

I was alone with my son in the ER, holding him, pushing his long, golden hair away from his deep brown eyes and praying to God that his body would fight back. I was angry, sad, scared and numb. I told him he would be just fine, and that he would feel so much better soon. With every reassurance I gave him, I needed to tell myself. Eventually he did overcome with aggressive treatment and he started to feel better and his condition stabilized. The doctors and nurses were incredible, especially one doctor in particular. He spent a lot of time with us, and asked a lot of questions about food allergies in general. He told me when he was in medical school he wanted be an allergist, but the ER is where he landed. Before we parted, he told me he learned a lot from our case and thanked us.

Over the next few days things returned to normal for John. He went back to school, soccer, basketball and band practice. He hung with friends and played play station with his brothers. But for me, I was stuck in the sadness of watching my son nearly die from a goddamn popsicle. Everyone asked me all week – how is John? How are you? And every time they did, I felt the trauma all over again. I kept thinking about the Shannon’s, Hom’s and Giorgi’s – and every other family who have literally watched their child die from a food allergy. I wondered how did they ever find the strength to go on? How they continue to fight and advocate for the rest of our food allergy children? How does a parent go on after losing their child? I’ve lost both my parents (my father from lung cancer at 14 and my mom from pneumonia at 22), and that pain and loneliness never really goes away. But when I had my children I started to finally feel love once again. What I experienced with John last weekend rattled me to the core. I became numb and terrified and retreated into myself all over again – because the very thought of losing one of my children put me into a tailspin of pain and abandonment. It’s the unspoken symptom of being a parent of a child with a food allergy – the vulnerability and fear we live with every day. The fact that John could face anaphylaxis next week, next year, or maybe in 10 years is something we as food allergy parents have to live with. And then maybe that ONE time he wouldn’t make it. Like last Saturday. When he almost didn’t make it.  I know I can’t dwell on it, but I can’t forget it either.

48 Responses

  1. Hi Kelly. I’m so very sorry to hear about this! I’m so glad John is ok, though. This is horrible to go through. Just curious if you looked into OIT? Not sure if you’re on Facebook’s peanut anaphylaxis cure, but she has the list of all the OIT dr’s on there. My son is doing peanut OIT & is up to 8 peanuts 2 x’s/day! His blood work was off the charts for peanut IgE & very high for the peanut components, as well. He stated w/ a pinhead size amount of peanut. He has sailed thru it! Most dr’s that offer OIT, offer it for milk, egg, wheat & peanuts. Some do more, too. Hang in there & praise The Lord John was ok!!

      • Oral Immunotherapy…there has been great success with it. I’ve debated on doing it with my son as well, but even if he is ‘cured’ of his peanut allergy, he is still allergic to tree nuts but I want to explore it further now that he is older (my son is 6). Thank God your son is ok!

    • Hi Stephanie. To learn more about OIT, you can join the “Peanut Anaphylaxis Cure” page on Facebook. That’s where I learned about it. Basically, you start out w/ a pinhead size amount of the allergen then increase the amount every week at the dr’s office. The page founder did OIT for her son’s peanut allergy. There are only a handful of dr’s in the U.S. that offer it. You can look on her page for the link of OIT dr’s. It works 85% of the time. The only time you are not a good candidate is if you have EE/EOE or uncontrolled asthma. It is so worth it! I couldn’t stand the thought of not doing anything for my son when there’s a treatment out there that’s working 85% of the time! He has multiple food allergies (tree nuts, sesame, seafood, garbanzoes, lentils), but we are going to get rid of them one by one. In fact, just by doing the oit, he lost his unbaked egg allergy, his sunflower seed allergy, his mustard allergy & we think some of his spice allergies, too. Also, the dr. expects his legume allergies to possibly go away as well after oit, since they share similar proteins w/ the peanut. She also expects some or all of his tree nut allergies to go away, too after treatment. It’s almost as if oit makes your body less reactive. If you are not on Facebook, feel free to email me for more info: Good luck!

  2. Hi Kelly,
    I am so sorry to hear about this. Praise God your precious son is alive and recovered! I pray that you will find peace, healing and comfort. As a parent it is so hard to watch our children go through these type things. We cannot control every action that affects our children. It is difficult to accept this sometimes (for me anyway). I find comfort in trusting in our Lord to protect them even in these situations. Be thankful in all things for His love brings me closer to Him and therefore brings me peace. Please know there are people praying for you and your family.
    peace to you,

  3. I almost couldn’t get through this, but I figured it turned out OK or the title would have been much different (found through link from AllergyMoms). I have a middle-school-aged son, allergic to dairy… Too close to home. Immediately I think: *hugs* to you and your boy; those two times I misread the ingredients (once in canned soup, once in a frozen treat); the countless times I’ve argued with the school or a coach about ‘damned popsicles’ precisely.
    SO so glad he has recovered. Hoping you recover too. Neither one of you guys are alone in this!

  4. Thank you for sharing your story. I am so glad John is all right now, but I understand the stress you must be feeling. Being an “allergy parent” is just awful. Each time I send my daughter to school, or let her go to a friend’s house I wonder what might happen. I am encouraged that you were able to educate that ER doc though. It is good to hear that he wanted more information. Another allergy family will benefit from his new knowledge. Thank you for that!!! (And when my daughter had her first anaphylactic reaction to peanuts I drove her myself, epipen in hand…the admitting nurse gave me a stern talking-to and I will never do that again. But I get why we do these things…)

  5. I’m so glad everything ended okay! One detail from your account that struck me was the fact that John didn’t want to tell you guys what was happening. I’ve been that kid–heck, I’ve been that adult. There’s a sort of morbid embarrassment in admitting that you failed to check your food properly. I don’t really know what to suggest you tell him to counteract that embarrassment, except reassurances that he’ll never get in trouble for admitting to an allergic reaction. I’m sure everybody learned from this. Hang in there! Hugs!

  6. Kelly, I was thinking about you yesterday when we were making your Bundt cake recipe. Then checked Twitter today and saw this post… I am so sorry and so glad your son is OK. As always, thank you for your honesty. I learn so much from reading about your experiences. Hang in there, and please know there are many people who have benefited from your work and are supporting you.

  7. How terrifying! Thank you for sharing your story with us, because I’m sure it will save many lives. Based on your experience, I will be having a talk with my son about how crucial it is for him to tell us the minute he suspects a reaction. Regarding the ambulance situation: in my area, the ambulance will go to whatever hospital I request (and ambulance patients usually get treated sooner than ER walk-ins). But even so, there have been times when I have driven my son to the ER for an asthma attack when he would have been better off in an ambulance. And I’m a nurse, so I should definitely know better!

  8. Also, I’m so sorry that you lost both your parents at such a young age. You definitely deserve a break! I can see how those losses make these close calls even more poignant.

  9. Hi Kelly,

    Thank you for sharing your emotions and the incident. Thank God he is okay, and know that even sharing this, could save another’s life just to share what can happen and how quickly we must react. Hugs and prayers!

  10. Yup! When my son had his second reaction ever, and it was anaphylactic, I cried at night…for weeks…I didn’t want anyone to have him, I wanted to stay at home and watch his every living second. I felt guilty and I felt scared (which still isn’t a good work for the fear) that I could lose him at any point…I’m with you….now at 3 years he k ow how to use his Epi pens, questions every food item handed to him and knows the symptoms to relay…I’m proud he can, yet sad and terrified (still not a good enough word)….

  11. Thinking about you. Your last paragraph is such a good summary of living as a parent of children with LTFAs. I hope you start feeling better soon, and I am so thankful that John is ok.

  12. So sorry this happened for your son. This really struck a nerve with me and I could barely read your whole post. Our son is also very allergic to dairy among many other foods. I am taking away the lesson not to drive my son to the hospital but to call an ambulance. I think my instinct would be to drive as well. We are so thankful for your advocacy, information and cookbooks. You have helped to lead us through a very uncertain and difficult time. We now feel confident in feeding, caring for and ADVOCATING for our son!

  13. Kelly,
    First off, thank goodness that John is okay. That is the most important.
    Second, thank you for sharing the blow by blow of how you handled the situation, including and probably especially the mistakes: the label reading and the ambulance calling.
    There are so many food-allergy parents who have yet to face what you faced that it’s hard to know exactly what one will do in the moments of crisis.
    Third, thank goodness that John is okay.
    Fourth, thank goodness that John is okay.

    Sending gratitude for everything you’ve done for us. And sending wishes for emotional healing and strength.

  14. Oh, dear. What a scary situation. I’m so glad he is okay now, and I pray you’ll find some comfort and peace soon, too.

    When my son was two and mostly non-verbal he stopped eating his lunch one day and ran to the bathroom. Curious, I followed him, and found him desperately trying to get the lid off a tube of neosporin. After some yes and no questions, I learned he wanted me to squirt neosporin on his tongue because it was “owie”. To this day I don’t know if his tongue was itching or swelling or both, but I know he was having an Ana reaction. Scared me to death!

    Thank you for sharing your story; reading things like this help train my brain for how to react when something like this happens again for my son. I’m sorry you both went through this, but grateful you’re willing to help others through these experiences! Hugs!

  15. Kelly, if you are only a week out from the ED trip, please, please, please be so very patient and gentle with yourself. And with your husband, as well. Think of these next few weeks in terms of a mini-PTSD experience for you.

    My son’s “big one” happened when he was 7, caused by a mistaken gulp of cow’s milk. He missed school the next day only because we didn’t get home til 4 in the morning – other than that, he bounced back like a rubber ball. His dad and I, however, lived in a fog for at least 3 weeks.

    Thankfully, I’ve been active on KFA’s forums, and sort of knew that this was to be expected, and a normal response. We switched into survival mode: paper plates, simple, easy meals, sleep, kindness…just allowed ourselves to be zombies when we needed to be. Little by little, the fog dissipated.

    Also, writing a very detailed account of the whole experience and sharing it with my husband, plus writing up our follow up “de-briefing” phone call with our allergist and making sure I understood everything inside and out were helpful steps.
    Doing so also helped us solidify our plans for both avoiding another “big one” as well as fine-tune our plans for the next “big one” should it happen anyway.

    Kelly (and all reading): even if you are a FA “veteran”, if you want to be immediately among other parents who understand precisely what you’ve been through, come stop by KFA. Even just lurking & reading other posts in the “After the Epi” support thread is helpful. God bless you, and I will pray for everyone’s emotional healing.

  16. Kelly, thank you so much for sharing your story. It’s so truly frightening and I teared up reading your account. A Similar situation happened with my son a few weeks ago. It really does shake the whole family to the core. I’m so glad that John is fine. Big hugs to both of you!!

  17. Thank you so much for sharing. We can all learn so much from this. I’ve had my terrified of losing my babies moments but we can’t live in fear. We have to live each day to the fullest and squeeze them tight

  18. I’m so sorry. It is so terrifying to go through that. My son had a similar experience a little less than a year ago, on his 7th birthday. He ate something with lupin flour in it, which unbeknownst to me at the time, is related to peanut. It is beyond frightening to think how close we came to losing him.
    A little after that I walked by an end-cap full of peanut butter in the grocery store, and was just stunned by my feelings. I felt like I was staring at a display full of loaded guns. All I could think was, this could kill my son, and it’s just sitting right out here in the open! Not exactly rational, huh?
    I’m thankful your son is ok Kelly!

  19. So sorry that happened! Especially the biphasic reaction; there is something incredibly nerve wracking knowing one shot of epinephrine might not work.
    I hope John is feeling better!

  20. Thank you for posting. I am so glad your son is ok..very scary situation, hang in there and keep moving ahead. You dealt with every allergy mom’s worst nightmare.

  21. Oh my gosh! Every allergy parents’ worst fear! Gut wrenching fear! Your story had me in tears. So sorry that happened, but grateful that your son will be okay! How terrifying! Praise God for your quick actions and the knowledge and diligence of the ER staff. God bless you and your family!!

  22. I am very sorry to hear about your son’s reaction, and so glad he is okay. It sounds like maybe this was his first anaphylactic reaction since diagnosis? My son is now 14, is extremely allergic to peanut and tree nuts, and has outgrown his severe food allergies to wheat, soy, egg and milk, and I can completely empathize with how you are feeling after such a scary experience. It is very traumatic to see your child get that close to death, and you have little control over how it will turn out. I have been there with my son a number of times.
    I think one of the best things you can do is find a knowledgeable and supportive friend or group of friends, perhaps some of whom also deal with food allergies, and spend some time going over the entire event, from start-to-finish, and analyze all of the many good things you did to prevent and treat John’s reaction and support him, and then go back and find the gaps in prevention and care, then brainstorm how those gaps can be filled, and things can be even safer for John now, and perhaps have a less traumatic experience should he ever be accidently exposed again. You might need more time to recover from the trauma before doing this, but in my case, my anxiety to address the gaps in his plan of prevention and care was so great I had to address it all as soon as I could do so, before I could settle down and deal with the rest of the feelings, etc.
    My son had symptoms of food allergies as an infant and 2 more minor reactions to milk before he had his first ana reaction at 10 months, also to milk. He was very close to dying. We had little information and resources compared to now, which is why he wasn’t diagnosed before that reaction, and we had no EpiPen, only Benadryl. Anyway. even after researching all about LTFA’s and putting all of the myriad things into place to prevent reactions and learn the best way to treat them, he still suffered a number of ana reactions over the years, and thank God he survived, but everytime we learned something to do differently both to prevent and better treat successfully any future reactions.
    Some of the improvements we made over the years were reading ingredients 3 times, and in revers order, before giving anything to my son, and we also labelled his packages of food as “safe” with a sharpie, and “NOT safe” in order to decrease the chances of a reaction even further. We also learned early-on, through making some mistakes, not to drive to the doctor’s office or hospital instead of an ambulance, since not only can an ambulance get through town and traffic much faster and more successfully, but also because they were equipped to monitor AND treat the symptoms of the reaction, including breathing treatments. We also learned not to listen to a good doctor who is familiar with your family, but not an expert on Food allergies or your child’s conditions, during a reaction, just follow exactly the directions from your child’s allergist, etc., and without waiting to debate whether it could “just” be an asthma attack, etc., but rather to always not hesitate and err on the side of caution and give the Epinephrine. We learned to have the Epinephrine at the ready, unlocked, in multiple locations, and also to have multiple doses available, as not only can it wear-off within 5 minutes, but there will be a defective auto-injector once-in-awhile that will fail to inject, and so be useless.
    We learned most of these lessons through failures on our part to make the very best choices, even though we were doing our very best based on our knowledge and understanding at the time. And as a result of coming close to losing our little boy a number of times, we are much more prepared to make better decisions in the case of an accidental exposure, as well as thinking through many more possible scenarios to prevent that from happening. And we rely on the advice of experts to treat aggressively and with all due haste as soon as any symptoms/exposure occur, with much more confidence we are doing the best thing for our son, even if he is resisting treatment or others voice doubts about the necessity.
    I don’t think we are perfect or above mistakes at all, but the risk of doing something less than the best is reduced after each mis-step is addressed following each reaction, and our confidence we are doing the best we possibly can grows as well. We always know we could lose our son despite our best efforts to shield and save him, but we in seeking to learn more and more from our experience, experts, and the experiences of others, we can feel as good as possible living with knowing we are as prepared as possible to do everything in our power to prevent that outcome.
    OIT has not been an option for my son yet, because he has had ana to very small amounts of allergens, he has asthma, and his test results remain “off the chart” (higher than the range the tests measure). He has also had ana reactions to allergens his test results showed were only slightly likely to cause a reaction. And yet he has so far outgrown 4 of his six severe food allergies. And with more research for both treatment and a cure, as well as more and more options and accommodations for people with food allergies, we are hopeful and optimistic that life will continue to become “better,” and easier, whether he outgrows his remaining allergies or not. But we do not relax our vigilance, so there is always a level of being on-alert and on-the-lookout, which is tiring and wearing, but endurable. And living with the ongoing fear of of knowing we could lose him so easily is stressful, to say the least. But knowing we do our very best all we can to prevent it, with the best information we have at the present time, lets us rest as easy as possible. You and your whole family will be in our prayers and thoughts during this time. And remember, you are not alone!

  23. Kelly,

    Thank you so much for sharing your story. I can’t imagine how frightening that must have been (and maybe how anxiety-inducing it still is) for your family. By sharing, you’ve provided an important reminder to the rest of us to continue to be safe and vigilant and some important tips if we find ourselves in a similar situation.

    We hope John is feeling much better and wish you continued success on the blog, cookbooks, etc.!

  24. Sad to read the story, but happy that the outcome was survival with “only” emotional damage.
    I am a 46 y.o adult professional who has idiopathic anaphylaxis and has average 6-8 weeks between ambulance rides over the last 18 mths.
    If there is one thing missing with the treatment is that hospitals just discharge you 4-6 hours after your symptoms reduce, but nobody addresses the emotional trauma.
    It is the most surreal feeling to just walk out of hospital after just hours before wondering if you were about to die.
    So to the parents, spouses, family members, just keep your eye out for what this is doing to your loved ones.

  25. Gosh I’m so sorry Kelly that you had to go through that. My son is 4 and I have to live with this fear everyday. I’m terrified of sending him to school and just about everything he comes in contact with. I pray that if this incident ever happens that I would have the courage like you to stand up and speak for my son in a hospital room or wherever. He’s allergic to all nuts and eggs and have had a few incidents but never life threatening and that was already enough to bring me to my knees. I can only imagine. Praying for you and your family and all the families who have allergy children.

  26. Kelly thank you for your blog. I found it when my son was ten months old and diagnosed with several food allergies. Your words and experience have been with me at drs apt, educating myself and family, working with the school etc. Your blog has been in my head when people have said “food allergies are just like when someone chokes on a hot dog”.
    You were even a topic when I was going to be on the news and I had your cookbook out. The reporter doing our story new you and said she worked with you.
    I have never met you but your honesty, vulnerability and words help all of us get through day to day. Today I have learned even more. The questions the symptoms etc.
    Thank you for being open to sharing and being honest. I hope I have the strength you did in those moments.
    Take care of yourself

  27. Kelly,
    Thank you for sharing your story and I’m so sorry to hear this happened. My daughter is four and allergic to dairy, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts and seeds. She is just beginning to understand what her allergies are and I live in fear for her every day. I am also learning to be an outspoken advocate for her until (and after) she can speak for herself. People that have no experience with this just have no idea what it’s like. I’m really thankful for you and all you do for us!

  28. It’s been 5 years since our last reaction. Sometimes, it still catches me off guard-and it feels like yesterday. Glad that he was okay-eventually.

  29. I know that look…..impending doom….seeing that look in your childs eyes is something you never forget. But kids and our allergic kids are so resilient. I am so proud of my happy and yes healthy 8 year old daughter. She had 3 ANA reactions in the space of 2 weeks when she was 6 from what turned out to be new allergies.
    As parents of kids with allergies I don’t think we realize just how much stress we are constantly under. That fear of “the big one” is ALWAYS there but we have to suppress the anxiety in order to empower our children and raise kids who are careful but not afraid.
    I wish you calm and confidence as you move forward with the new normal….life after an anaphylactic reaction.

  30. I have no words…I just want to hug you and John. **hugs**

    Thank you for sharing this story, all your other stories, and your fabulous recipes. I use your cookbooks all the time. DD is allergic to milk, eggs, peanuts, & tree nuts.

  31. i know you worry about the future. I’m here to tell you as a 42 yr old man who is allergic all legumes (peas nuts and beans), that it can be done. I’ve travelled the world and eaten all kinds of weird stuff. Your son can live a full life. A little caution and prep works every time. You’ll be ok. Just always be ready.

  32. My heart goes out to you, John and your family. I’ve been following your blog, cooking your recipes and basically admiring you and your perseverance in overcoming all of the obstacles associated with living with food allergies over many years. You’ve helped me cope in so many ways with my 7 year old boy’s multiple allergies, and I hope that you are able to find something or someone who can help you the same way that you’ve helped me and many, many others. I hope that you realize how many lives you touch in such a positive way and I hope that you can find some comfort in that too… Thank you for sharing your story – it must not have been an easy one to write. Take care…

  33. I’m so sorry you had to go through that and im so happy your son is okay. I have several anaphylactic allergies and I’ve always said that it’s much harder on my parents than it is me. My parents faces when I’m having allergic reactions is heartbreaking– almost worse than the feeling of my tightening throat and chest. All parents are heroes, but you are an exceptional one. Any parent who has children with severe food allergies is an incredibly brave human being, and your son is so lucky to have you.

    Know that he WILL get through each reaction. I’ve had anaphylaxis since I was 18 months old and we’ve had some close calls for sure, but I pull through every time. As will your son. I’ll be 28 this year and have had the most wonderful, fulfilling, and happy life. My food allergies have forced my parents and I to dive into some really difficult feelings and realizations like what you’ve expressed in your post, and it has made our relationships stronger.

    Anyway, all that to say, go easy on yourself. Watching your baby go through anaphylaxis is the worst thing, but you are his rock and hero. He will always fight through reactions and be okay.


    PS it’s now been 5 years since I’ve had an allergic reaction, and being anaphylactic to egg, seafood, nuts, some types of preservatives, and 5 different classes of antibiotics, that’s pretty amazing! It WILL get easier as he gets older. Hold onto that! I used to have several a year, but it WILL get easier.

    Hugs and prayers to you as you work through the past week’s events!

  34. Oh Kelly, I am so sorry. Your blog has been such a huge help to me. My 6 year old son is anaphylactic to eggs and nuts. Your blog is one of the first that I found after his first ana reaction to peanuts at 15 months old. I pray that you will be able to find peace following the reaction. Be kind to yourself.

  35. Hello, Kelly! I’m giving you a tight, hug right now! I wish there was something I could say or do to take away your pain and fear. Keep talking about it, if you need to. Keep on keeping on – you’re a strong woman with a heart of gold! You can do this!

  36. You are so lucky this happened in your own home! My son was given Moosetrax ice cream at Boy Scout camp this summer, 2 1/2 hours away! Thankfully, his only reaction was vomiting, but I was panicking at home while getting updates.

  37. Kelly – I thought I commented when I first read this the day you posted but I must have still been teary after reading it. First, I’m so sorry this happened – John is the same age as my oldest and I can only imagine your fear as this happened and then in the days that follow. I hope you have all made some peace with this and take comfort in knowing that all of your posts, experiences and amazing recipes have helped so many. My copy of your cookbook is stained with chocolate and batter and is always the first one I reach for when someone requests a baked good. Be well and Happy Holidays to you all.

  38. So very sorry to hear this. It breaks my heart. As a home schooling mom who tries to protect my son always, it’s so ironic how these reactions happen at home. Both of ours did, too. My son would also hesitate to say something and he’s at the same age. I am praying for you and learned from your raw story. Thank you for sharing it and give John a hug for me. Take care of yourself, sweet lady.

  39. You are an amazing and strong woman! My son has a shellfish allergy and we have an allerject for him. I am so afraid of his allergies that I stress out every time he gets a few hives. I downplay it a it for people because I know they wouldn’t understand…. It’s just a few hives. But my head constantly worries that it will turn into more. There are so many sad stories about anaphylactic shock that it’s nice to read your happy ending. It helps to read about how parents pull through, too. We are all human and make mistakes and we learn from them. Don’t beat yourself up over your mistake. Just plan for next time and know that you can do this. Momma bear instincts kick into overdrive!

  40. Just wanted you to know that I shared this on our Milk Allergy Mom FB page and it’s been viewed over 5,000 times in about 12 hours. You have helped many people. Thank you for sharing this. And I hope John is all better and that you are emotionally good now. Hugs.

  41. Thank you for sharing your story. Every parent worries about their child’s future, but for parents of food allergic children, that fear is multiplied. So sorry you had such a scare……

  42. What a frightening experience. I’m thankful that your son is well. This is the situation that parents of allergic children fear. It helps to read this and other people’s stories. Thank you for sharing your story.

  43. Oh my gosh! How terrifying! I’m glad he ok. THANK YOU for sharing your story! It’s nice to know we food allergies mamas aren’t alone and can understand each other!