Monday, June 8, 2009

Peanut allergies and Summer Church Camp

So the big day for Amanda to leave for camp came on Saturday, June 6.  I took all the precautions I possibly could to keep her safe while at Camp Tejas.  I filled out medical forms, I met the nurses, I gave them her Epi-Pen (they wouldn't take her Benedryl) and made sure they knew the steps to take in case of an accident.   That's what has caused me the most worry - an accident.  At 9 years old, Amanda reads every label before she eats it to make sure it is "safe".  It the food doesn't have a label then she won't eat it.  But accidents can and do happen.  Even to adults who have lived with peanut allergies for many, many years.  I have never been to the camp where she is now so I'm not sure how the food is served.  Is it buffet style or are they handed plates of food.  One of the nurses told me she would inform the kitchen after I mentioned cross-contamination.

On the way to drop Amanda off at the church to load the bus, she said to me, "Mom, I really wish I wasn't allergic to peanuts.  I really hate having to ask about everything I eat".  I assured her that her food allergy makes up just a small percentage of the gifts, talents and challenges God has given her.  

Sending her to this camp was way different from the girl scout camp she went to in March.  For one, she went with a small group who has known about her peanut allergies for years.  Also, one of my good friends who is a Doctor went with the troop as a chaparrone so I knew Amanda was in good hands.

With this camp, there were over 300 kids from our church that went and I don't know any of the counselors, or workers or staff.  No one.

Interestingly while we were waiting for the busses to leave (the kids were already on board), we saw the nurses walk by the plastic bins full of the medication.  Amanda was not allowed to carry her own Epi Pen and the Epi Pen went on another bus.  I turned and said to my husband, what if something happens on the bus?  What is the snack they are serving?  Nutter Butter cookies seem to be a favorite snack these days.  No one knew.  Thank God I packed Amanda's own snack in a back pack.  But what if it's a snack that contains peanuts?  The fumes could affect her breathing - and she didn't have her mask!  There was nothing I could do at that point as the busses started taking off.   And off she went in God's hands.  I just have to trust that He is in control.

So, she left on Saturday morning at 9 a.m. and I have not had a single call.  She comes back tomorrow afternoon and I can't wait to hear about all of her adventures.  She has a shy side to her, so I can't wait to hear if she went zip-lining!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Carla....sounds like you got everything in order for this wonderful camp trip for Amanda and I am thrilled you never got any calls....I can only imagine how you felt all weekend...

    I can't wait to hear about all her adventures!!!

    Make sure you fill us in!!!