We drove home in complete silence. It wasn’t usually like this. Normally my son and I looked forward to his allergy appointments in the city. We’d make a day of it.
But not today.
Every year since he was a baby my son Philip, 12, has been dealing with deadly food allergies. We’d become used to good news. As he got older he was able to tolerate increased amounts of egg and some nuts. We felt certain that he would soon grow out of his allergies completely.
That’s not what happened. Instead that day at the doctors we were told that his remaining allergies – egg, cashews, pistachios, walnuts, pecan nuts – were most likely lifetime allergies. We were told that we didn’t need to come back for another appointment for two years.
It was really hard to hear.
As Philip has gotten older I have become more and more afraid for him because he is with me less and less. He’s needed to start taking more responsibility for his food allergies and I’ve had no choice but to trust that he is ready for that.
It all came crashing down last week when he came home with a letter from the school that I had been dreading. It was a consent form for the upcoming school camp. Last year he'd gone on a short school camp close to home and I'd been able to prepare all of his meals for him.