A Weekend Away

By Heather Legg

This weekend we are heading off for a lake with a group of friends. We’re all bringing different meals and I know it will be a great time. However, as I get ready to go grocery shopping, I realized I never mentioned to anyone that my daughter has a food allergy.

The group we are going with are all friends, but we’ve never done family dinners and things like that together (okay as I write I am getting more panicky). We are not as scared of her allergy as we used to be, and even think she may have outgrown it. However, now that I’m thinking maybe someone is bringing cashews to snack on and walnut brownies, I’m starting to worry.

I think I will take my own advice and bring a few safe things for her to eat for all meals. I am sure there will be plenty and most people don’t make really nutty foods for kids anyway. If she needs to pass on a brownie, she’ll be fine!

So I am asking myself, should I have told everyone? I’m not sure, because then people begin to second guess everything. If they are making something that “may have traces,” well, she’s fine with that, but they may be unsure and skip it. Or she’s fine with peanut butter, but the sometimes people lump peanuts and tree nuts together and they’d be afraid to bring anything peanut buttery.

It’s a tough call, but I think we’ll be alright. She is getting older and will often be places where the complete menu is out of her control, but as long as there is something, she’ll be fine. I know many kids have much worse allergies, and that their allergens are much more common.

This could be a good practice run for her taking responsibility while I am around. She can ask if she’s not sure about nuts, and pass on something if there is question. I’m sure she won’t starve and that there will be plenty of safe things for her to eat.  I also don’t think she is so allergic anymore to worry about traces or contamination (that’s not to say I’m not taking her benadryl and epipen!).

Well, off to the grocery store for my meal and some nut free extras. I will let you know how the weekend goes upon return!

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