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A Poem for the Person Making Comments About My Child's Food Allergies

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I’ve always written poetry. It just comes naturally to me, and it’s a great way to cope with many issues I deal with, including medical ones. It’s a good distraction from the pain and anxiety I face daily due to interstitial cystitis (IC), asthma, premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), fibromyalgia and Lyme disease.

When my son was diagnosed with food allergies in December of 2014, I was already overwhelmed with struggles and worries. I felt like my head was going to explode. I have food allergies too, but got them later in life and didn’t take them seriously enough. Since he is a young child, I had to do much research and preparation to keep him safe. This work never ends; environments and food products are changing daily.

little boy looking upset

One of the things I was unprepared for is how nasty and mean some people can be when those in our community mention their children have food allergies. We have to work hard every single day to keep our children alive. We are not trying to inconvenience anyone; we want our children to survive. I even read one comment that said something like “maybe your child should just die and succumb to natural selection!” I never imagined the hate speech, rolled eyes and or apathy we would face. It made me really sad for my son and for humanity.

So I wrote a poem about it. One of many. These poems make me feel better, and I hope someday will comfort or empower my son. I want to teach him that he matters and is not a burden. He is a blessing. He is loved, and this is true no matter what anyone else says.

Below is my poem. I wrote it about food allergies, but it is really about anyone with health challenges. You are all wonderful. You are all strong. You all matter too. Let’s all try to work harder to see things through each other’s eyes. Let’s all try each day to be someone we are proud to look in the mirror at.

Through Your Eyes

I looked in the mirror today,
with my sparkling eyes of blue;
I saw a little boy with food allergies,
who is blessed despite this news.
For it makes me more compassionate and kind,
to those who have struggles too;
I liked what I saw today,
but can’t say the same for you.
Your cruel comments about food allergies,
will hurt a young child like me;
your child may grow up to be a bully,
because it’s through your eyes they see.
So watch what you do and say,
for you haven’t walked in everyone’s shoes;
I liked what I saw in the mirror today,
Can you honestly say you do too?

Follow this journey on Nuts About My Son.

Originally published: March 16, 2016
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