Visit 2 to SoCal Food Allergy, Part II: The Food Challenges and Dosing!
Wednesday was El’s first day of Challenges in the office at SoCal Food Allergy Institute. Unfortunately Dad and Liv had to stay behind this day for Liv to recuperate. El was saddened her sister couldn’t be with her, nonetheless excited to challenge her foods and … jump on the trampoline! I swear this is her favorite part of the whole thing and funny enough, we have a trampoline (bigger then the one they have …) at home. But hey, whatever works! She passed Camels Milk and Coconut Milk with flying colors! Not even the slightest reaction – Yay!!
We left Clinic and got a special treat – El got to try In-N-Out Burger french fries for the first time … verdict: she LOVED them! After a relaxing afternoon by the pool we headed up to the room for an early dinner and bedtime, to be rested and prepared for day 2 of challenges!
Excited to take on Day 2 of Challenges at the Clinic, El got ready and we headed out to challenge pea protein and quinoa. After jumping on the trampoline and peddling the bike in the gym she cleared her treatment foods with another PASS! This allowed us to move all her evening treatment foods into her morning maintenance and the only food that will be capped for her in that category right now is camels milk. Her excitement to know she can eat peas out of the garden this year was heartwarming – I only wish I had it on video!
We wrapped up day 2 with happy tears and excitement for day 3 dosing the next day. Liv was feeling better but still tired. We packed up our hotel and headed to our Airbnb for the remainder of our visit. Looking forward to a full kitchen, laundry, a little more space and exploring a new area. And, of course, as celebration we went to not one, but two bakeries that El can safely eat from.
We first discovered Twice Baked Baking Co. in Long Beach on our first venture to California from a recommendation. Not only were the women there incredible, El could eat most items and their cross-contamination protocol was comforting to me. This has since been a favorite – especially their mini chocolate bunt cakes!
On our last trip to Cali we ventured a little further out to try Sensitive Sweets in Fountain Valley. El can eat ANYTHING in this whole bakery. ANYTHING. Other than our own home she has never been able to walk into a public place and be completely ‘safe’ to eat or touch anything. I teared up the first time I brought her in and said, “you can pick anything you want”. She looked at me in sheer confusion and amazement. It was an incredible moment. And, they have push-pops and sugar cookies for the win at this stop! Also – their empanadas on Saturdays are absolutely delicious!
OK, so we ventured across a couple cities to pick-up some celebratory snacks and sweets and then checked into our new place. Having a little more space with ability to step onto a patio and open windows was a game changer – especially trying to keep Liv and El from sharing too many germs with each other and maintaining El’s health for dosing. Another early night to bed for a productive Friday of dosing was in the cards.
Liv seemed almost back to normal Friday morning and we all headed to Clinic for El’s morning of dosing. Unlike Challenges, where she eats a large volume of foods she has been Dosing and then exercises vigorously for 5 minutes, Dosing is a fractional amount of the specified food and there is a 15 minute rest time between each to observe for reaction.
El passed dosing on mares milk, chestnut and buckwheat flour! All three of these foods will move into her evening treatment at home and allow us to continue following the trajectory we are on.
As overwhelming as it seemed in January to look at the road map and see “15 visits” mapped out with a little over three years in the program, it’s hard to fathom we are already almost five months in and two visits down. The fact El just turned 5! shocked me enough, and I see already how fast these three plus years will flyby and hopefully open a world of strong health, freedom and adventure for this little girl.
Thanks for following along!