Hi! My name is Maddox, I am 8 years old, and I am MADD ABOUT FOOD ALLERGIES!
When I was a year old, I was diagnosed with a peanut allergy. Luckily, my reaction was not life threatening. My parents gave me a peanut butter cracker and being 1 years old, I was more interested in smearing it on my face than eating it. I’m glad I didn’t eat it, because my skin quickly broke out into hives. My Dad quickly reacted and gave me a dose of Benadryl and everything seem to be ok after taking it. We visited my pediatrician the next week, who referred us to an allergist. This is when we found out that I was highly allergic to ALL nuts and from that point on I needed to carry EpiPen’s with me.
This isn’t where my story ends. Did you know behind this boy-like face, I am a super hero? The irony to my story is that I love someone with Food Allergies. Nope, not myself. This is my little sister Skylar. This picture says it all, she is full of life and the silliest girl I know.
Since we found out I was allergic to nuts, our home has always been nut free. My parents often checked with the allergist to see if we could test my sister, but we were under the impression the longer we waited the less likely she would be to have the allergy. We started the discussions, but just were too nervous to give her anything. We didn’t think much more about it until the day came to us
I am a pretty big basketball fan, so the sport I love playing the most is basketball. My favorite team is the Wake Forest Demon Deacons. GO DEACS!
January 30, 2016, was a typical Saturday morning. I had a basketball game at the D-1 sports complex, so I grabbed my EpiPen sports belt and we headed to the gym. About mid-ways through my game, I noticed a bit of commotion in the stands. Not long after that, I saw my Dad race out the door. What I learned is my sister shared a granola bar snack with a friend that included nuts. Do you still wonder how I saved my sister’s life? What I learned, is my Dad grabbed MY EpiPen sports belt at that very moment and raced outside to give her a shot of epinephrine and drive her to the hospital, which was directly across the road.
Everything was happening really fast. My Mom made sure my grandparents knew to stay with me so she could follow my Dad and sister to the ER. Once my Mom got to the hospital and was with my sister she called me to let me know things seem to be ok. Whew, thank goodness!
Have you ever wondered why there are two EpiPen’s in a pack? Have you ever split them up? We found out that day, that not having them together could have been fatal for my sister. Things quickly turned for the worse after that phone call from my Mom. My sister experienced rebound anaphylaxis 45 minutes after the first dose of epinephrine, which is rare but can happen 20% of the time, and she began to go into shock again. That’s when you would need that second EpiPen……if you were not at the hospital yet. Skylar’s body quickly broke out into hives and her breathing became shallow and labored, doctors began to work on her to pump her with 3 more doses of epinephrine, antihistamines, and steroids. As my sister was becoming very distressed they tried tubing her, but couldn’t with how fast her throat was swelling. After so much medicine her body finally started to react positively to it and from what I know deflated like a balloon releasing its air. They transported my sister to a children’s hospital nearby to monitor her. She finally came home the next morning. I worried so much about her hoping that nothing tragic would happen after learning all the series of events. If she had not had that first EpiPen at the gym, I might be telling a different story.
SO! This is my person. This is someone I love who has Food Allergies. I want to help kids cope and understand their allergies to stay safe during the hustle and bustle of everyday life. There is A LOT of planning that goes into any type of day/event and the more we talk about it, the safer we will be. I want to start the conversation. I am not ashamed of my allergy and I am not embarrassed of my allergy. Please check out my YouTube channel, Instagram, and Facebook to follow my journey!
This is me Maddox, The Real MADDSKYE, MADD ABOUT FOOD ALLERGIES!