Monday, May 7, 2012

We are not alone!

Hello everyone!  I just moved to another state where I have to figure out what restaurants are safe to eat at. I had to explain to all the new people I meet why I am having nothing but ice water (LOVE that yummy ice water) at last night's dessert party my family was invited to.    I was so happy to get a little note from a blog reader named Whitney.  Her first coconut allergy was movie theater popcorn, just like me (and mine was when I was about 26 years old), years later I started finding out more things I'm allergic to.  We are like twins born apart!  LOL!   It reminded me that none of us are alone. No matter how many things we end up being allergic to, we can always be grateful for the things we are not allergic to.  For example, I can still eat chocolate.  Sure, it has to be pure chocolate not processed on the same equipment as anything I'm allergic to, but I still have that and many other foods left to eat.  This is just one example of the many sweet letters all of you send to me, so thanks, readers, we're all in this together.  I just wish I had more answers about the perfect shampoo for all of you. Oh, and I can't even begin to talk about makeup. . . last time I experimented with mascara it felt like my eyelids were being peeled back over the top of my head.  In any case, you'll like hearing from Whitney:

Dear Becky,
My name is Whitney and I am allergic to a lot of foods.  And as of Easter this year- I can add coconut/coconut oil to my list.  I went to the movies and had movie popcorn (for probably the first time in a very, very long time) and my tongue swelled up so badly that it was impossible for me to speak without being in a huge amount of pain.  My tongue also turned really white and looked almost like blisters on the side.  I had no idea what was going on- other than that I needed benadryl (and my mom!) right away.  I knew that something was wrong just because of the other allergies that I've developed in the past 7 years.  (I later called the theatre to see what the popcorn was made in to confirm the allergy- I would have never thought!!!).  I am turning 27 pretty soon, and when I was a sophomore in college I became allergic to nuts. One day I could eat them, one day I could not.  I was to avoid all nuts from that moment on.  I am always developing new allergies now... sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, all nuts, some raw fruits and vegetables.  I had always avoided coconut in the past because I wasn't sure if I was allergic or not.  But now I know for sure that I am.  Even last week, I picked up some veggie burgers at the store, cooked one, took one bite, realized that I hadn't checked the back of the box for ingredients.  Within a few moments my mouth was tingly and I had to take a benadryl... the ingredient?  Coconut oil!! 
Last week I started my research on this new allergy that I have, and came across your blog.  I wanted to say thank you, because I learned a lot about new foods to stay away from (cool!) and that I am not alone with this allergy.  I have days where it doesn't bother me (my allergies in general), and others where I just break down in a "why me" kind of fashion.  I have to be thankful that I am still able to eat eggs, wheat, dairy, gluten- which so many others are not able to.  Your blog was a breath of fresh air, and I wanted you to know how much it meant to me to see something written about some of the issues that I am constantly learning about. 
All the best, and thank you, 


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