Monday, June 15, 2015

Finding the Joy in Trials

Just when we think we've had enough, it gets harder. Things can sometimes be more difficult than we can handle. But this is the time we cling to God the hardest. This is the testing of our faith meant to make us stronger. These are the moments we can also see the ways God works in our lives.

My son had a major scare over the weekend after consuming milk by accident. He is deathly allergic to milk. Immediately, his lips swelled, he was drooling all over, and having a difficult time breathing. I gave him an Epipen, called 911, and frantically sent my children to look for a neighbor to watch them as we prepared to leave in an ambulance. Have I mentioned we've just moved to this town from several states away only two weeks ago? Did I also mention that my husband was away with work? Even more, we don't really know the area yet or people either as we've just been getting settled.

The ambulance arrived within 3 minutes of the call.  My son was still having a difficult time breathing so they loaded the two of us into the ambulance. They gave him another Epipen and several rounds of steroids. A lady in between college was home across the street and dropped everything to care for my other five children.

It was scary as I held my son hoping he would be okay. They got him right in and loaded him with more steroids, Benadryl, and Zantac. He was monitored until late into the night. The neighbor stayed with our children and when we left, her mother brought us home from the hospital.

Now here are the amazing parts of the story. The neighbor mother who drove us home from the hospital happened to stop by our house just two hours prior to the incident. She told me she had been wanting to come meet us, but that day specifically, God was nudging her to come at once. Her daughter whom watched our children had waved to us just days before as we both were getting mail from our mailboxes and exchanged simple words of greetings. That was the first house I sent my eldest to as we prepared to leave. They were a God-send and afterwards, we found out we shared more things in common (husbands having the same jobs, both having children with severe allergies, etc.) which made the situation that much more interesting.

One of the nurses who cared for my son was from the exact same hometown as me which is all the way on the other side of the U.S. Another neighbor lady ran to our home to check and make sure our children were okay. It appears we picked an excellent neighborhood to move to here. Every person involved was extremely helpful, caring, and kind.

Now for my children, my oldest two were so brave. My oldest son never hesitated for a minute in going out to find help from a neighbor. My oldest daughter noticed what had happened and to be even more sure ate out of the cereal bowl that had the coconut milk in it to find out if my allergic son had indeed mixed the bowls up. She got me immediately as I was in another room. I was amazed at how quickly she reacted by trying a bite out of her siblings bowl which would usually be too "germy" and running to get me.

My middle two are the two who have the severe food allergies. These two have dealt with some pretty traumatizing experiences in their lives so far. My son was so brave in going through it and my daughter who relates to this was equally brave/concerned for him. The next morning when she woke up, she was so worried for him.

Thankfully, the twins had just fallen asleep for the night as this all happened and didn't know what was going on. They were fine through the whole situation.

I feel like I am still processing all that happened. This was not the first time this has happened although the seriousness of it hasn't been this much since the middle two did a food challenge nearly three years ago at UCLA.  We are re-grouping, as my husband likes to say, and buckling up the rules tighter on how we go about food in our home. Generally, we are pretty strict about it. The case with this one happened so fast where one child got up from the table when another did. My son sat back down at the wrong place setting and took a bite out of the wrong bowl. It was a moment where I happened to be out of the room.

It was a pretty horrifying experience and yet, the results could have been worse. It was really hard knowing I didn't have my husband or family close by. It was hard seeing my son that way and realizing this very well is going to be a way of life for him forever. Nonetheless, I am thankful for a God who kept everyone okay throughout the whole night. To God be the glory great things He has done.


  1. Oh my! How scary. I'm so glad the Lord provided help for you and your children. He gently leads those with young--even through the valleys. I'm so glad everyone is okay. I can't even imagine the stress of keeping the food straight. Prayers and hugs for you, dear Sister!

    1. Keeping the food straight is a BIG challenge. On the plus side, we definitely eat a lot better because of it since we can never eat out. Thank you for your sweet words and prayers. I so appreciate it, sweet friend!