Friday, March 13, 2009

I think I'm in love with peanut butter

This is something I recently learned about myself.  About a year ago I underwent allergy testing (again) to confirm that I have Oral Allergy Syndrome.  I do.  It's a lovely little syndrome that's not so lovely and has had me either getting really creative with fresh fruits and vegetables, or ignoring them all together.  But at least the rest of the family can have them in any state I choose - so that's great for their health.  Just so you know, I seem to respond to most of the major categories, so yippee for me - it's all meat and cheese from here on out!

The upshot of it all, though, is that I tested positive for almond, walnut, and peanut allergies as well.  Now, almond and walnut are on the OAS list and I was SURE that's all it was - but apparently you can develop them at any point in life.  I'm still holding out hope that the 50% allergy shot option will take care of the food sensitivities (including nuts - or maybe that make me nuts) but until we have some extra thousand dollar bills lying around (I don't care if they are fictitious, this is my fantasy) we'll have to just wait and see on that one.  Peanut allergy, on the other hand, is a very serious thing and NOT connected to OAS.  I've never had any symptoms with that, and my allergist said it was probably a false positive, because it's usually a positive test AND a family history that makes for an active allergy.  So I'm clear, except for the "My uncle has a peanut allergy part" and for the "peanuts scare the **** out of us" part (yes, she was speaking, apparently,  for the entire allergy profession).  So, I left with my Epi-Pen prescription, some blotchy skin from the crying, and the words, "This is only in case a meteor falls from the sky and your first reaction to a peanut is super huge.  Or so you can be the hero mom when some kid gets stung by a bee." running through my head.  Lucky me.

Since then I've had a love/hate relationship with peanuts and all peanut products (including reading labels - easy since Savannah's classroom is peanut free and I have all manner of helpful lists at the ready).  But she told me to act normally until I had some kind of reaction.  But I didn't know if the next peanut butter and jelly sandwich would mean the end of brand freedom and the beginning of label-checking and the rejection of gifts of homemade baked goods.  After a dark, dark season for lunches in our house (for me),  despite my husband's good idea of grilled cheese and various soups (all of which I love), I decided a while back that I  should not be avoiding peanut butter and can now have it back in my life.  Thus I remembered:  I am in love with peanut butter.  

Let me give you a brief history:

I had peanut butter and jelly every day of kindergarten (except one, but we don't speak of that peanut butter and banana obscenity anymore).
I used to scoop peanut butter onto my ice cream.
I learned in my teenage years that graham crackers, mild cheddar cheese, and peanut butter are good in any combination.
When I lived in France I used to travel to Paris just so I could go to Haagen-Dazs (they had peanut butter chunks in ice cream which I thought that made the younger me brilliant!  And in France, it was vanilla ice cream, not chocolate).

And now, my current obsession with Reese's pieces is out of control.  If it gets any more ridiculous, Kevin will have to perform an intervention.  I thought it might have the been the year away, but I've evaluated my history, and it appears that Peanut Butter is my culinary kryptonite.  Who knew?


Amy said...

LIZ! I can't tell you how you just made my day. I eat peanut butter on cheddar cheese too!!! (Never tried it with graham crackers though). I discovered it in college and would sometimes get cravings for it...I tried to get my roommates to try it, but they wouldn't because they said the idea was really gross. I am SO GLAD that there is someone as strange as me in the world ;-)

Dina said...

I feel for you... I have people bring peanut butter for me from any decent country where they make it well.
And for Reese's, I spent a good hour on my cell trying to explain my Brother how they actually look (you know packaging and everything) while he was in the middle of a store in the UK...
I am happy there are PB loving woman out there :)

Marybeth said...

I'm sorry, but get over the bananas!

Michelle H said...

I also love peanut butter - with graham crackers or bananas! (All 3, yum!) Ha ha... I'm sorry to hear about your allergies. I hope that they don't make too much of an impact on your daily life.
Cameron might be allergic to bananas! We're still trying to figure that one out...