Peachick Diaries: On our Bookshelf – Living with Allergies by Emma Amocasto
‘Living with Allergies’ by Emma Amocasto is the perfect starting point for navigating the rollercoaster that is allergies & allergic conditions. It’s pages are packed full of straightforward, common sense answers to the questions you may not have even known you needed to ask! Wherever you are along the track, this book has mountains of practical tips so you can continue living with allergies, not despite them! Endorsed by Allergy UK & features interviews from leading medical professionals.
Allergies have always been a part of me.
I vividly remember sitting in front of a plate of eggs for a whole afternoon at school because I had refused to eat them. Even at six I knew they were no good for me. One mouthful and I’d be violently sick, my throat would be sore and I’d be tired & itchy for days after…
But back then, allergies were not really understood. So this lunch time battle with school was my daily life. I’d pick wedges of cheese out of cracker sandwiches, ‘accidentally’ spill anything with a creamy sauce over the table and scrape butter onto to my fingers and wipe it where no one could see. Anything not to eat it.
As I got older I added asthma, hayfever and countless foods to a list of allergies that is now so long I often forget things that are on it! (until my lungs remind me) Nowadays, I either have severe asthma attacks triggered by allergies or allergic reactions that have severe asthma attacks as a symptom of.
Depends who you talk to.
Basically my immune system & my lungs randomly take offence to random things and go to war with me stuck in the middle of it and if I’m really lucky my skin joins in too! So allergies are just part of me. They don’t dictate my life but are they are reason I have odd little personality quirks, like being slightly unsure of people hugging me, or washing my hands way more than is necessary. And don’t even get me started on mixed up food!!
Nothing prepared me for becoming a parent of children with allergies. It’s a whole different kettle of fish entirely!
Where I would just go without, The Peas need to eat.
Where I would just eat and deal with the consequences later, The Peas need to be safe.
Where I would just shut up and say nothing, The Peas need to be advocated for (or actually more often than not, reined in as they yell as a flock at some poor soul whose not got the training or authority to give them what they need!)
And dealing with nurseries, schools and school nurses (Aaaaargh!!!!) Professionally, my advice, opinions and solutions to obstacles garners respect as part of meaningful, constructive dialogue centered around what’s best for the child. As a parent, the exact same words triggered nothing but backlash and months of it being made very clear I was an unfit parent which left The Peas no better off at all and me on the verge of a complete meltdown.
After years of dealing with the older Peas allergies, I started this blog and found others in similar situations. I am lucky, in those days where I sat crying through feelings of isolation, frustration or failure I had an army to pick me up. Those Free From Gang lovelies have literally been my saviour. The lovely Emma from Free From Farmhouse was the first one of them I ever met in real, actual life. She is a definite Peachick favourite! And now she has written the book, we all needed but couldn’t find!
About the Living with Allergies Book:
Available in Hardback from Amazon as well as Waterstones, WhSmith and all good bookshops! RRP £19.99
This beautifully written book, is like a great big ray of sunshine for those times when the world of allergies just seems a little too black and overwhelming. It’s pages are packed full of straightforward, common sense answers to the questions you may not have even known you needed to ask. And wherever you are along the allergic rollercoaster ride, this book has mountains of practical tips from people living with allergies (including my Millie!) so you can continue living with allergies, not despite them!
‘Living with Allergies’ is endorsed by Allergy UK & features interviews from leading medical professionals including Dr Adam Fox – Paediatric allergist and president of British Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (BSCAI). It contains easy to understand explanations of all the information those medical types often like to bombard you with but never think to explain! AND more importantly, how you can manage the everyday implications of living with allergies & allergic conditions.
How allergies & allergic conditions present themselves are as unique as the individuals who have them, and whilst no book could possibly cover every single variation in minute detail. Its a great foundation. From the basic biology of the different pathways and practical tips for getting a diagnosis through to addressing the often overlooked psychological effects of living or parenting alongside allergies, there is something that will be relevant to everyone.
In this house we believe it is important not to co-parent with your child’s allergies. Yet so easy to do. You let the allergies dictate every part of family life because it feels safer. This book has some great practical tips for managing allergies at home, starting school and how to help your children manage their allergies independently. A great resource to take to allergy appointments and meetings with you to reinforce or explain what you can’t. Ask your childcare settings and schools to add it to their home resource library, it would be a good CPD resource for their staff and a brilliant for other parents to read! Oh and a great big hug for those moments you feel lost or isolated.
The Peas are great at managing their own allergies independently, they order for themselves in restaurants and Alys has even been to the local Costa with her friends after school. They have started to read this book for themselves, Emma’s writing style makes the information accessible and easy to understand and they love the practical tips from their fellow Mini Free From Gang members! Millie has even taken it to school for show & tell and started to read it to Elodie to help her understand why she reacts the way she does!
I would definitely recommend this book for anyone, including those with family members or children in their care who have allergies or allergic conditions. And Its Definitely Peachick Approved!
***Disclosure: I was sent a copy of Living with Allergies for review but all opinions are my own!***