Monday, February 15, 2010

A 4th Grader’s First-Hand Account of a Food Allergy Reaction

by Kelley Lindberg

Last year, my son’s best friend (who was ten years old at the time) had a reaction to some cheese hidden in a burrito that landed him in the doctor’s office and took him several days to recover from. Last week, the boy’s mom was going through his school notebook from last year, and she stumbled across an essay he’d written that she’d never known about.

In class during that time, the fourth graders all read a book about Jackie Robinson, the African-American baseball player, and how he overcame barriers to achieve his own success. The kids were supposed to write an essay about a barrier they’d overcome, so this boy wrote about his reaction.

His mom asked him if he would like to show it to me. She explained that it might help other kids and parents understand what it feels like to go through a severe allergic reaction to food. He said sure, and he gave it to me.

So this week, I’m happy to share this boy’s first-hand story of what it feels like to have an allergic reaction to food. Thanks, J!

“Barrier," by J.

My severe food allergies acted up and stopped me from going to school. But then I drank the DISGUSTING steroids and I was better the next day, but felt EXHAUSTED! I didn’t feel like going to sleep. My body had a fight for its life and it was tired. I spent a few days on the couch, a few weeks of tiredness, even when I went to school. I felt tired, not just because school is boring! (Except for P.E. and recess.)

I overcame it by taking the steroids and resting. I felt tired but couldn’t go to sleep. So I just lay there and rested and tried to go to sleep a few times, but couldn’t. I actually wanted to go to sleep and get some rest. I also wanted to play with my little sister.

I had to have courage that I would be o.k. If anybody teased me about them, I would just hold in my anger just like Jackie Robinson did.

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