I Choose Happiness

Do you ever wake up in the morning wondering why YOU have to suffer through food allergies? When I was younger, this thought ran through my head almost everyday. When I finally asked my mom why, she simply said “God has special plans for you in the future”. He knew that I am strong enough to live, survive and flourish with food allergies. Over the years, I have discovered that He was right all those years ago when he blessed me with food allergies. However, I know many people do not hold the same faith as I do, and for you I have this quote:

        “I am in charge of how I feel, and today I choose happiness

Every day I could wake up and think “Ugh, just another day I won’t be able to eat pizza or ice cream, or even just buy lunch.” Instead, I wake up thankful that I have food to eat, despite the ingredients of the food. There are so many in the world without food that would gladly take the shares that people complain over.

I’ve learned that food allergies are not a hindrance to me, but have given me a reason to be stronger, a reason to be thankful, and a reason to be who I am. I don’t know if I would be the same person I am today if I didn’t have food allergies. So despite the problems that food allergies bring me, they have shaped me to be the strong, independent, and happy person I am today.

So, thank you God. For everything.

-Alli

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Thankful for Food Allergies

Having food allergies is a time-consuming job. We live with them 24/7, and because of that we think we are the only ones that have a burden to bear. But there are so many other  people that have harder struggles than us. I have a 9 year old cousin that has been living with diabetes since he was 6, I have a neighbor that had cancer. There are people that have divorced parents, and have family members that have passed away. When i take everything into perspective, food allergies are not that bad! I still live a happy, healthy life. I just have to be careful with what I’m eating and touching, but compared to the lives of others, my struggles are easy.

So next time you start to pity yourself for food allergies, think about it, and maybe take a moment to be thankful for your food allergies.

Best of Luck!

-Alli

Teen Advisory Group (TAG)

A few months ago, I applied to be a part of FARE’s Teen Advisory Group, commonly known as TAG, and today was the day I found out. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

(drumroll please!)

I’VE BEEN ACCEPTED!

I’m so excited to be working with FARE and I actually ran around my house doing a happy dance (no joke!)   I have found another way that I can help those with food allergies be more confident and feel safe and cannot wait to get started! Check out more information at:
 http://www.foodallergy.org/resources/teens/teen-advisory-group

Wish me luck in the year to come, and try to follow my stories on the FARE website! I will try to frequently give updates!

-Alli

Trust Yourself!

Growing up as a kid with food allergies, I’ve had to learn how to take care of myself. My mom, dad, and sibblings know how to handle my food allergies, and live with it in their daily lives because of my brother and me. But despite the great knowledge and allergy-awareness they’ve gained from living with me, they are still human, and can still forget how I have to live.

Sometimes my dad buys pretzels that I can’t eat without realizing it.
Sometimes my mom uses the same spatula for beef hamburgers to flip my turkey burgers.
Sometimes my sisters will bake something with the intent of making it allergy friendly, but forgets to use soy milk, or the egg substitute instead.

Do these instances mean that my family doesn’t care or understand? Of course not! They love me very much and never intentionally do these things! However, because it is not them living with the food allergies, and their mistakes are not going to directly affect their health, they slip up sometimes.
Because I know they don’t mean to do these things, I don’t blame them in any way, and try not to get frustrated with them. Instead what I’ve learned to do is to look out for myself, and my brother. If someone is cooking dinner that involves my allergens, I ask the “chef” if they are being safe with my food. I sometimes even like to watch them cook, even if they don’t notice, just to be sure they aren’t going to get me sick accidentally.

In essence, I’ve learned to trust myself above all others. Even if someone close to me tells me its safe, I want to double check in any way possible. Of course, when I was younger this was not possible, but as I’ve grown up, I’ve learned to trust myself and my actions to keep me safe. I hope many of you can learn to do the same. For sometimes it is in trusting yourself that you discover your own judgement is better than that of others, even those close to  you.

Please believe me when I say I am not writing this to tell you that you can’t trust those around you, those trying to help you, but to make sure that those you trust know what they are doing!

Best of Luck!

-Alli

Acts of Love

Over the years, I have discovered the people that really care for me and love me are the ones that take the time to be careful with my food allergies. The little things people do to keep me safe, those are the things I remember the most about a person. If they are friends, they know the brands I can and can’t eat, and stock their houses with allergy-friendly food for sleepovers. Not to mention they’ll avoid bringing in food I’m allergic to for lunch (Check out Random Acts of Allergy-Friendly Kindess). My family members don’t mind having allergy-friendly cake, even when its their birthday! They also know how to read labels, double checking everything I read to see if its allergy-friendly. They take the time to make something allergy-friendly, even when its easier not to.

Its these little things, these acts of love, that help me stay strong, knowing that my family and friends support me in what I have to live with. They make having food allergies easier! These simple acts of love help me find my true friends, and help me grow even closer to my family! What are your simple acts of love that make living with food allergies easier? Send me your stories! 🙂

-Alli