Yesterday Was One of Those Days but Sometimes You Just Have To Stop and Be Thankful

Walk in OR

This is not the post I had planned to share today. I had planned on sharing an apple cake, but I could not get yesterday off my mind and knew I had to share it.

The internet world often shows only a small part of a life. It shows only a little picture of the big world that is going on in the background. But if you open the window a little wider you see we all have so much in common. We all are leading busy, crazy lives, that are less than magazine and picture perfect.

I have shared my messy kitchen and my allergy breakdowns in the past because the reality is I am just like all of you. Today is another one of those keeping it real, raw type posts.

I almost shared this in just my allergy section, but I decided that even those that don’t deal with food allergies might be able to relate to this because the reality is sometimes you just have to focus on being thankful.

Yesterday was one of those days. Really the last two week have been that way. We have been going, going, going, and I am done. Worn out and tired.

I left the house three times yesterday. When you live out in the country, and nothing is down the street, leaving the house three times in one day, takes a lot of time. And the things I left for could not be changed.

Piano lessons, Dr appointments, etc. They had to be done and they were spaced out in such a way, with various family members, that coming and going was the only way to make it work.

For today though, I had nothing on the plan but grocery shopping. However, grocery shopping is not down the corner. It involves more than just a quick trip down the street to shop, so I knew it would involve quite a bit of time. I really needed a day to just stay home, take a deep breath, and try to catch up. I did not want to leave the house today.

So, yesterday in the middle of my crazy day, I decided to grocery shop so that I would not have to go today. My list was not that long, only twenty or so items, and I thought I could quickly run in and run out.

Well, I should know better. When you deal with food allergies there is never a quick trip to the store, unless you are only getting milk and produce. Your shopping life changes when you deal with food issues, but yesterday I momentarily forgot about that and thought I could do it quickly.

As I was going through the store getting the items on my list, I noticed a few new items in the gluten free section. I had to stop and take a look. The gluten free section at this store is small, so new items are an exciting thing. They were from a brand I love, so I thought I would give them a try.

I stopped, in the middle of a busy aisle, to read the label. Reading labels is what you do when you have food allergies. I don’t buy anything without reading the label. So, I stopped and read the label.

Now, a person stopping to read a label in the middle of a busy grocery store, is like getting behind the person with 50 coupons and a stack of price matches. People don’t like it. It annoys them and they can get nasty. People look at you like you are crazy for holding things up and making them go around you.

But, it has to be done and I stopped and did it.

I quickly read the labels on the two flavors I wanted and did not see anything we could not have in them. In the cart they went and I finished my shopping.

When I got home I started putting away the groceries and realized I was starving. I had not eaten well at all yesterday. I will just say it involved a Dr. Pepper and a candy bar and not much else. Nothing had gluten in it, but it certainly was not healthy food. I needed some real food.

So, I opened up one of the new gluten free items I bought and started eating. So good. Like really good. I loved them, but then I realized something.

I could taste something. Something I had not had in a long time. It tasted like sesame. But I knew that was not possible, I had read the label. Or so I thought…….

I quickly read the label again. I saw right there on the label black sesame seeds. Not in just one package, but both flavors I bought.  My daughter can’t have sesame seeds. She carries an epi-pen for her sesame allergy.

Many of you know the sinking feeling I got at that point.

I was mad. Mad at myself. Mad at food allergies.

How could I be so careless? What kind of mother am I? How could I do that? We could be headed to the ER. I thought how much I hate food allergies! Really, really hate food allergies. I was thinking how much I just want to be normal and shop like a normal person. Why can’t we be normal?

Yes, I was being dramatic. Very dramatic. And thankfully I was only thinking all this instead of saying it out loud for everyone to hear. What I was doing was traveling down that dangerous road of self pity and why, why me. That road that is so very easy to go down………..

But then I stopped. Took a deep breath. And said a prayer of thanks.

Yes, thanks. Because I am thankful.

I am thankful it was me not her that ate the item.

I am thankful we did not end up at the ER.

I am thankful we did not have to use the epi-pen.

I am thankful she is safe and fine.

I am thankful it is not worse than a food allergy, because it really could be so much worse. So much worse.

And yes I am thankful in many ways for this food allergy journey because it has taught me so much and stretched me in ways I never would have been stretched if we had not traveled this road.

Sometimes you just have to step back and say a prayer of thanks because there really is so much to be thankful for.

 

Lynn's Kitchen Adventures

Comments

  1. Love this post. It’s the path that kept me sane through 10+ years of heart trouble for my husband which culminated in a transplant. It is this path which draws us closer to God. Thanks for sharing.

  2. So scary! I can’t even fathom the stress that food allergies would put on the day to day.

  3. Things like that happen, we are all human! I’ve even done that a time or two. One thing that helps me at the grocery store (especially if I’m strapped for time or there is a lot of people there) is if I see a new gluten free item I will briefly stop to look at it but I won’t buy it right away, I try to keep a mental note of the product then I will go home and try to find the product online to learn more about it.

    Thank you so much for sharing this story!

  4. I am thankful it was you and not her, too. You are a great mom!

  5. LaVon Evans says:

    Thank you for keeping it real, I don’t have a food allergy, but I take many things for granted. I am so blessed in my life and I need to be more grateful for all of the many blessings in my life. Thank you!

  6. I could really relate to this post. We don’t have food allergies but I find myself getting frustrated and upset that it seems like everything with my 3 year old has been a struggle since she became a toddler (she was a very easy baby but wow, the toddler years are rough). Stuff that was a non issue with my other daughter or other kids has been difficult with her. She has an extremely limited diet (by her choosing and we can’t get her to try new things) and I would give anything to go back and do things differently when we were first introducing solids but I can’t. And what helps me put things into perspective is I have a friend whose 3 year old died of cancer. So I just think about hey friend and how lucky I am to have my daughter healthy and alive and the other stuff will sort itself out. She won’t be a toddler forever.

  7. Being an individual with food restrictions that can cause serious illness and the mom of a child with serious food allergies is tough stuff for sure. We all juggle and some days we do better than others. What you went through is scary and sobering for sure. If you haven’t already, it might be time to get your daughter reading those labels at home and checking behind mom, not because this oversight is likely to become a common occurrence or even happen once more, but because it’s a critical skill she’ll need for the real world. You can discuss any questions she has about any ingredients. She’ll learn how the labeling is done depending upon the manufacturer. (As we have all learned, the FDA allows companies to list the major allergens in the ingredients listing or in a Contains: statement. Some do both and we have to read both. And those “manufactured on the same equipment” and “manufactured in the same facility” statements are voluntary and can be misleading. This can be an opportunity for some good lessons, Lynn. She will be better prepared to navigate being offered products at friends’ houses and school. When it’s time for her to go away to school/out on her own, she’ll have years of practice and she’ll do this type of checking without even thinking about it. Glad you were able to stop and be thankful and get past the challenging moment, Lynn. Btw, love that photo. :-)

    Hugs,
    Shirley

    • She is great about reading labels and being careful when not at home. She will not eat anything unless she is sure it is safe. She will go hungry if she doesn’t know for sure. At home though, she relies on me to make sure it is safe, so you are right, this is a reminder that she needs to double check even me, because I won’t always be around and she will ultimately be responsible for herself. Thanks for the encouragement. And the photo was taken a few weeks ago on a walk when I was visiting Oregon. :-)

  8. Thank you for sharing this. I’ve been reading the book of Philippians recently, and it’s one of those things that reminds us to be thankful regardless of our circumstances. We all have bad days sometimes but also so much to be thankful for. :)

  9. Love your recipes, but really loved this great reminder! My catch phrase is “I need to have gratitude before my attitude”. Can’t even imagine your frustration, but thankful it wasn’t worse ;)

  10. Thanks for sharing your story.

  11. Thank you for opening up and sharing your day. I needed to read that :) We have severe allergies here too. They had never seen it before when my son had it. He could only eat rice and carrots the first year of his life and had to drink his vitamins and nutrients like the men in NASA did on the moon! It was so expensive and I thought how will we do this? How will we live? How will he live?? We added 4 more children and another kid with allergies. I so feel you :) 2 of our kids has high functioning autism as well so I am always trying to be on high alert but sometimes I slip up and don’t give myself credit or sit back and see how thankful I should be.

    Thank you for that
    Marisa

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