Well it was always going to happen, I fell behind on my A to Z challenge. I was doing so well but then Monkey failed the egg ladder at the first step (that's a whole other blog post). At that point my time needed to be spent dealing with allergies rather than writing about them. My baby was suffering and she wanted her mummy.
She's much better now though. And while I'm never going to catch up and finish on time, I AM going to finish. The allergy theme is so important to me and the last week has reminded me how serious they can be.
So, I'm up to letter N.
N is for nursery. For any parent the decision to send your baby to nursery is a tough one. I think for an allergy parent it's even tougher. While your baby is at home with you, you can keep them safe. Trusting somebody else to take the same care of them and their diet is a very big step.
We first looked round Monkey's nursery three days after her big stay in hospital. I very nearly didn't go. I'd been wobbly about it before her diagnosis, now I was convinced that nobody would be able to look after her. I even thought they might not take her - I definitely expected to have to provide her meals or maybe pay slightly more. I'd read all kinds of horror stories in allergy groups about how nobody could care for allergies properly.
I really had to build myself up for the visit but as soon as I'd been I felt so much better. They were really reassuring about her allergies and the nursery looked like a fab place. I knew Monkey would be happy there.
Monkey started nursery in April 2015 when she was 9 months old. She settled really quickly and more or less picked her own keyworker who she loved to bits. Right from the start they were great with her allergies. They found safe foods for her that we didn't know about and always let us know what she was eating.
Monkey likes her food and she'd only been there a few weeks when she decided she liked the look of someone elses. She stole a sausage off somebody elses plate! She can't eat sausages -they have milk and wheat and sonetimes soya. In a way I'm glad it happened though as it reassured me about the way they dealt with things. She hardly swallowed any as they got it straight out of her mouth. They let me know straight away and asked what signs to look out for. They did have to give her medicine for tummy aches and green poos but other than that she was fine. I was kind of glad they saw a mild reaction as they didn't know us well at this time, I wondered if they thought I was just a fussy, over protective mum.
She's been at nursery a year now and has noved from babies to toddlers. She's with different staff and a new keyworker. They also have a new cook. I'm completely confident that whoever is caring for her will keep her safe though. They're even helping me to get things in place for when she starts school.
So to those of you with little babies with allergies, please don't believe the horror stories. There are wonderful places out there that will do a fantastic job of dealing with your child's allergies.
We've been so lucky to find one for Monkey. Her nursery are amazing and have made things so much easier for our whole family. If any of the staff read this I want to say a huge thank you. Monkey loves you all :-)