Friday, February 06, 2009

The Post In Which I Give Up Chocolate...

:::GASP!::: I know, I know. You Know Where just froze over.

And no, this is not something for Lent. I'm not even sure how Lent works actually, other than the fact that my friends in school were always giving up something from Ash Wednesday until Easter. And just so you know, if it was a food item then I would always torture them by talking about it. Then I'd laugh maniacally. That's not what this is. And I'm not laughing. At all.

And it's not only chocolate. It's dairy, peanuts, tree nuts, corn and a few other things. Why, you ask? Well, I think I'll tell you.

My sweet Charlotte has pretty much stayed congested her entire short little 9 weeks in this world so far. Yes, she had a cold (probably RSV) for a week, but besides that incident the poor little thing has barely been able to breathe through her nose on most days.

Nasal saline and the bulb syringe (aka The Snot Sucker) are used multiple times on a daily basis just to give her a little relief. Honestly, it doesn't do much. And it makes her mighty ticked off. Mighty. Ticked. Off.

I had her at the doctor last week for an 8 week check-up (she's petite ~ only in the 50th percentiles!) and mentioned the ongoing congestion to the doctor. She felt it was probably a food allergy. Specifically a milk allergy. The nasal congestion pointed to it as did her inflamed, red eyelids. Problem is, I don't consume that much dairy.

If you must know ( and you don't, but I'm telling you anyway..) I am somewhat lactose intolerant. I don't drink much milk at all. I have a little in some cereal and that's about it. I don't like yogurt and while I love a good bowl of ice innards turn on me when I consume too much of it. It becomes Armageddon in the bathroom. You get my drift.

While I enjoy cheese I don't eat much of it except on the occasional burger or nacho. So I was fairly convinced the dairy angle was a moot point. However, upon doing my own research (thank you Google), I learned of many other food allergy triggers.

Chocolate is one of them.

Have I ever mentioned that when I get stressed out I tend to self medicate with chocolate? Um, yea. And when I'm happy I like to celebrate with chocolate. Yep. And if I'm bored I like to fill the time guessed it! Chocolate! I pretty much need a 12-step program to quit, y'all!
Life in these parts has been a little stressful these last 9 weeks, what with a birth, Christmas, illness, new floors, more illness. I've done nothing short of making chocolate the base upon which my food pyramid lies!

But you know what? If it takes giving up chocolate so my sweet little baby can breathe then you bet your booty I'm gonna give it up!! Along with the peanut butter (..whimper..), almonds, corn tortillas, colas and anything else I might need to give up to help my sweet baby breathe.

So bear with me if I'm grouchy and whiny for a bit. I'm technically in rehab now and it ain't gonna be pretty. There could be a throwdown or two.

But let me ask you....

wouldn't you give up Ding Dongs for this?


Jes said...

She is so adorable! I want you to know I'm going through the same thing, but I am a milk lover (esp cheese) so the past 5 months has been kinda rough.

However, there is hope... Oreos do not have milk in them. Neither do some brownies. Those are the two things that have kept me alive when I'm REALLY wanting chocolate. Be careful to check the ingredient list on everything, more things contain milk ingredients than you would think. Especially if you have to avoid butter too. Hang in there though, the older she get the less the dairy seems to bother my little one. I now have butter on occasion.

Hang in there, it will get better! For now eat lots of Oreos.

TheMadMonk said...

Just for you, Honey, I promise to show my love for you by eating all the Reese's Peanut Butter cups in the house. I wouldn't want them to be a source of temptation.

Lizardbreath said...

I'll be reading ingredients and sending you what I find. Oh, the agony, but you can do it.

Jessie's Girls said...

I'm luckily not chocolate dependent. Although I do admit that I have enjoyed Theia's potty training experience almost as much as Eliza since all 3 of us get M&Ms whenever Theia goes potty.

I actually got one of those aspirators that has a plug on the bottom and I stuck a cone-shaped small vacuum attachment into it so I could actually apply some suctiion when Ingrid was really congested. She didn't mind it ...much. But it worked REALLY WELL. NO! The substance does not come all the way up the tube! It stayed in the bulb.

Allergy Mom said...

She is adorable! If you think that the culprit is another allergen in the chocolate, you could try Enjoy Life products, which are free of gluten and the top eight allergens. (You can find them at Whole Foods and health food stores.)

I know what you are going through, since I nursed my son with multiple allergies until he was 15 months old and well adjusted to soy milk.

I hope your little girl feels better soon!

JB and Cindy said...

I have found a new love w/ Harper around, and you may want to try it. It's ice cream made from coconut milk and agave nectar. It tastes better than the real deal though. They carry the most variety at Whole Foods, but CM and Tom Thumb have it too. Maple Pecan is my fav. Check the choc ingredients in them because it may be choc you can have- I think they make it w/ beets but tastes just like choc. She's worth the "misery", I know you know that :)

Russ R said...

Keep in mind that it can take 3-4 weeks for dairy to leave the system, and that once it's out of your system, it needs time to leave hers. So, if she's 9 weeks old, there's barely been time for her to be dairy free.

It doesn't matter that much if you have some or a lot - if it's in your system, it's in your system, and if she's highly sensitive, a small amount is enough. Allergy symptoms are also cumulative, so dairy can contribute to problems from other allergies. Also, for food allergies, congestion isn't the only symptom. Are you sure you're lactose-intolerant, and not allergic to dairy? Because the symptoms can be the same.

It's not quite the same, but look for Vegan Gourmet cheddar or nacho cheese from someplace like Whole Foods - dairy free (most soy cheeses aren't - look out for casein in the ingredients, which is milk protein), and when melted, not too bad.