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Traveling With Nut Allergies

Travelling With Allergies

We’re going camping! Yeah! We decided this time we are going to rent a trailer. How exciting! Instead of killing our backs for five days on an air mattress in a leaky tent, we are going camping in style. Oh yeah. Lap of luxury here we come!
So while the husband is picking up the trailer, the anticipation arises in my two young ones. “Can we sleep in it tonight?”, “Can we play in it right away?”, “Can I pick which bed is mine?” It’s as exciting as Christmas! The trailer pulls up, gets parked and the doors are opened. It looks pretty clean. But is it? Is it really clean? Is it clean and safe enough for my daughter? Is it that clean?
We don’t know who the last renters were. We don’t know if they had trail mix, Rocky Road ice cream, bags of peanuts or other nuts, cinnamon rolls with pecans. We don’t know if they ate nuts in the beds, on the couches, the counter tops.  Before I can even let them in the trailer, I have to clean it…to our safety standards.

I start by taking out the pillows and cushions to check underneath to see if there are any nut remnants. (My daughter once had a reaction from sitting on chair and putting her hands down the sides of the cushions. There were pistachio shells underneath and she swelled up with hives.) I proceed with a good vacuum job on all surfaces before I put the cushions back. Continue around all the corners and couches, beds, every nook and cranny. I then get out my disinfectant wipes. Everything gets wiped down. EVERYTHING. All the door knobs, handles on the drawers, faucets, inside the cupboards, anywhere that someone who may have had nut oil on their hand could have touched. When I am done, this trailer is clean!

Sad thing is, I still worry if it’s clean enough.
I can only protect her to the best of my power. The rest is up to fate. The cleaning of the trailer is just one of the many steps we take in preparing for a camping trip, or any trip really. Realizing that there is not a close hospital (which by the way, I have checked to make sure I know the nearest location), I pack with me at least five EpiPens. Each one can keep her airway open for approximately 15 to 20 minutes. I figure five of them will at least give us an hour to get her somewhere should the need arise. Suntan lotions have been purchased after reading the ingredients to make sure there are no nut oils. Safe snacks are ready to go. There…I think we’re ready! “Oh, go potty before we get on the road!”
We love to go camping. We love to go to parks, on vacation, to friends houses. We can’t let life stop just because of my daughters disability, we just take a little longer to get there and maybe a little more excited to be there than anyone else.  After all, we have a little extra anticipation time on our side.
Author: Kelly

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