We wake up at some God-awful hour after I inevitably go to bed too late. The kids eat cereal while I make some coffee for myself and eggs for them. On perfect days, we start school in the morning. Most days, we start after lunch. My daughter is in preschool and dance because she is having the hardest time missing out on the social aspect of being home. My son is happy to have mommy time when she is off at her activities.
My idea of what I need in life has changed. An apartment is not ideal, but I have learned that a smaller place is easier to keep clean. Less stuff means not having to constantly pick up. My kids have been satisfied with legos, books and their iPads and don’t miss the toys we didn’t bring and don’t pull out most of the toys we did bring. We keep the television off most of the time.
Other OIT families have welcomed us with open arms. Even when someone says something is safe and I can trust that it is, no one bats an eye when I read the label anyway. My ways that were considered “helicopter mom” in Arizona are completely understood here. They know it isn’t about being overprotective about mundane things, it’s about being hyper-vigilant because the allergy has forced me to accept this role. We compare emergency medicine storage. We talk about reactions our kids have had. We talk about the hope we feel for our children’s future after OIT and how grateful we are that Dr. Jones couldn’t just ignore that this treatment exists. How, not only does he offer it, but he is constantly making it better and is totally available for all our sometimes neurotic calls and texts. I walked straight into a group we call our OIT family. We would all choose not to have to be here if we could, that our kids were never saddled with life-threatening food allergies, but since that is what we were dealt, we get through it together.
One month has flown by. At best, we are back home in another five. Any way you look at it, our time here will have forever changed us as a family. We will leave Utah stronger and safer.