It is not very often I feel like a super mom, but today I do. In my four and a half years of being a mom I have learned to trust my motherly instinct. Two years ago when C had her seizures I had knew deep down it wasn’t what they thought it was and I trusted my gut and fought for her. Today, there was no fight, just a very impressed doctor (no shame in giving myself a high five) and once again I learned to trust that instinct that we have as mothers.
Discovering a Pea Allergy
Today I took MD to the allergist for what I suspected to be a pea allergy and I was dead on. When I first told the doctor our story he said, “well it sounds like it is a pea allergy, but I will tell you in the 22 years I have been doing this I haven’t seen a kid with just a pea allergy. Usually kids are also allergic to peanuts as they are both in the legume family.” Since he doesn’t have any reaction to peanuts we knew we were in the clear of peanuts and thank goodness because dealing with a pea allergy seems much easier than a peanut allergy.
The Road to Discovery
One day last summer I made an afternoon smoothie for the kids. I do this often. I don’t remember what I put it in but I am sure it was something like a protein of sort, spinach, banana, strawberries, greek yogurt and of course peanut butter. He drank it all and immediately threw up everywhere. Our initial response was that he must be allergic to peanut butter, but why is it coming out now.
A few weeks later I made another one, but this time I put in almond butter instead and we got the same response. It has to be nuts of all kinds: almonds, peanuts, etc. So we began to avoid all types of nuts.
Fast forward to late summer. We were at the gym and I had just had S. The kids were playing in the play area and I was nursing and drinking a scoop of protein after my workout. We got to the car and MD violently puked everywhere. It was so bad that I had to strip him down, drive him home in his diaper, put C in a seatbelt and have him ride in her car seat. At that point, I thought his peanut allergy must be so bad and there had to be a kid in the play area that had peanuts and he was exposed to it.
We continued with our no nuts of any kind. Then one day I had finished an at home workout, had a scoop of my protein and left my blender bottle on the kitchen table. There was a little tiny bit (I am talking less than an inch high of liquid) left and MD drank it. No big deal, I had just mixed it with water and put no peanut butter in it. Immediately he started crying and saying his throat itched and within 5 minutes he threw up everywhere.
At that point we were at a loss. I looked at the ingredients list of my protein. It was a plant protein because I couldn’t have dairy while nursing and it contained only 5 ingredients. There was nothing alarming on the label. We couldn’t figure it out.
This same exact situation happened one other time when I left my blender bottle on the end table with a little bit left and he got sick. After that we got that protein out of the house and I stopped drinking it. We were certain that it had to be just that protein powder that I was using post workout.
During all of this I was texting a friend who has a son with peanut allergies and she had told me that peas were related to peanuts as they were both legumes. She thought maybe he was allergic to peas, BUT as I did my research it was very rare for kids to be allergic to peas but not be allergic to peanuts. We put peanuts back into his diet and he was fine.
Discovering the Pea Allergy
We had gotten rid of the protein in our house and hadn’t had any episodes in quite some time until Christmas Eve. I made my traditional beef and vegetable soup on Christmas Eve. MD sat down at the table and had a few bites of Josh’s soup and immediately threw up everywhere. I mean he may have had three bites, that is how small it was.
At that point, I knew it… it was peas! It is the only time of year we cook peas. I put a bag of frozen mixed veggies in my vegetable beef soup. All it took was maybe 5 peas for him to get sick.
The Allergist Appointment
I finally called the allergist to make an appointment to confirm my findings. Today we went in there and I told my story to the nurse and when the doctor came in he confirmed that I had done everything I was supposed to do. Before he tested him, he told me that he has never seen a child who had a pea allergy and not a peanut or tree nut allergy. This doctor is one of the best allergists in Indiana and was incredible! In all the doctors we’ve seen with the kids (and ourselves) he was probably the best yet!
After they pricked his back and did the test, we were instructed to wait 15 minutes. After about 3 minutes MD had to go potty so when I took him I checked his back and he already had a welt on his back. Sure enough, a pea allergy!
I am so thankful at this point we are just dealing with a pea allergy. We have an epipen just in case. I will have to start checking labels, but for the most part since we do not eat a ton of processed food we should be okay. I know it could be much worse so for this I am thankful.
I almost feel silly writing about this because it is so minor compared to the allergies (or health issues) other kids deal with, but I want to encourage moms to trust their mommy instinct. So often times too many people give us too many opinions and we second guess ourselves. The reality is we are the ones who spend the most time with our children and know them best. I encourage you to fight for what you believe. I learned that three years ago when C had her seizures and I was reminded of it today as I took MD to get tested.