Monday, November 19, 2012

Food Allergies and Science Camp

If your child doesn't have a food allergy, you have no idea how lucky you are.  When Warrior was little I never even thought about it.  I just knew he could eat anything he wanted.  I never even thought about having to check food labels to see if it included certain foods.

When Sugar Pea was 8 months old we found out she's allergic to strawberries.  I fed her some strawberry banana baby food and she ended up with huge hives and a trip to the ER.  I kept a close eye on what she ate to make sure she didn't get strawberries again.  I never realized just how many things use strawberries. Fruit snacks, juices, even some candies.  Anything that has strawberry flavor and is listed as natural flavoring she can't have.

Then when she was 2 a friend of mine's little boy gave her a strawberry.  That sent us to hospital via ambulance for a week.  Since then we've made sure she knows, and kind of scared her into knowing that she can't eat them. 

The worst part is when we moved 4 years ago we moved to the middle of strawberry country.  We knew before we moved up here that she couldn't eat them, but we didn't realize that just coming into contact with them, or their juices would send us to the ER via ambulance.  We learned that real fast in 1st grade.  For a birthday, parents brought the kids chocolate covered strawberries (Sugar Pea got chocolate covered banana).  Her table made decided to play with his and finger painted the table with the squished up strawberry.  Sugar Pea stuck her hand in it and almost instantly couldn't breathe.  Her teacher told me that in her 25 years of teaching that was the first time she's ever had to use an Epi Pen. 

When you see a strawberry you see a red juicy delicious fruit.  I see a landmine waiting to go off.  Especially when you have a class walking around with them. 

Thankfully the smell of them doesn't affect her, just physical contact with them.  So far.  If the smell ever does start to affect her, we're screwed.

During the harvesting times, we have to wipe everything down when we go out in public, and in some cases, like the store, she will wear gloves.  I know I look insane to some people.  Waiting rooms I will pull out my disinfectant wipes and wipe off the chair/table/whatever before she's allowed to sit.  Some of the looks I get from people are priceless.

Now her allergy may keep her from being able to go to science camp in January.  Well the allergy and Blue Shield.  She's been looking forward to this since Warrior was in 5th grade and got to go.

I have to have the doctor fill out a paper stating that yes she is allergic to strawberries and can not eat them.  If she doesn't have this filled out, she will be fed what everyone else is.

The problem I'm having is insurance and getting her into see the doctor to have this paper filled out. 

We're having issues with Blue Shield and Med-Cal.  Blue Shield keeps bringing Tin Man back to life and reactivating that policy.  When that happens, Med-Cal refuses to pay for anything because we have other insurance but Blue Shield won't pay for it because they have record of the policy being canceled April 30th.

We were in the middle of switching doctors when Tin Man died, which is making things even more difficult.  The old doctor won't fill out the paper because she's no longer her patient and the new doctor won't fill it out with out actually having seen her at least once.

I spent most of the day on the phone with both insurance companies and both doctor's offices trying to see what I can do to get this form filled out.  I have until the 30th to get it filled out and turned in or she can't go.

With it being Thanksgiving week, I doubt I'll get much done, but I have my fingers crossed that Blue Shield can get things situated in their computers tomorrow, and then call or fax Medi-Cal whatever they need tomorrow.

I am not going to be a happy mom if Sugar Pea can't go to science camp with the rest of her class because these 2 insurance companies can't get things straight.


  1. I do not have a child with allergies but I know alot of families that do. I homeschool my two boys and it is quite a few families in our group that homeschool due to their child's allergies. Oh and insurance issues are my specialty. My youngest has autism so I have had to deal with our insurance co alot. They can be one of the most frustrating things to deal with. I wish you all the luck!

  2. I didnt know anyone could be allergic to strawberries, wow! My daughter is only 2, she loves them. I hope that as she gets older she doesn't have any allergies but I will read more into it just to be safe because you never know!


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