Thursday, May 5, 2011

The Aftermath of Being Gluten-ed

On Tuesday, my son was fed a quarter of a slice of bread at the daycare centre he goes to three days a week.  A staff member served it to him accidentally.  Click here to read the post.  Yesterday morning when I posted, he had already had one diarrhea before heading off to daycare, and I posted that I hoped that would be the end of it.  Knowing all along, that of course it wouldn't.

The thing with being gluten-ed, as I like to refer to his ingesting gluten, is that unlike an allergy where the reaction is often almost immediate, the effects of gluten drag out over several days.  With my son, it usually begins with a rash, and progresses from there.  He has been on a prescription anti-allergic for the past few weeks, so the rash was suppressed, but the rest of the effects began strongly yesterday, and have carried into today.

Yesterday at daycare he had diarrhea that was so bad the staff had to change his entire outfit.  His eyes watered and his nose was stuffed, and he began to drool from breathing through his mouth.

Then there is his behaviour.  The gluten exposure changes his behaviour drastically.  He becomes whiny and defiant, unhappy about everything.  He was so whiny last night we finally just put him to bed.

This morning it was more of the same.  He stays home with me on Thursdays, and this morning he refused to participate at all in his mom-and-tot class, lying on the floor and rolling a truck back and forth for over 30 minutes.  The rest of the time he just wanted to be on my lap, watching the other children play.  Normally he sings and does crafts, playing with his friends.

Additionally, his appetite goes off the charts since nutrients aren't being absorbed.  Today, he ate a bowl of gluten free cereal, a gluten free waffle, a banana and two cups of rice milk for breakfast, followed by 1 cup of strawberries, another banana, a sandwich bag full of veggie chips and two packages of fruit gummies for his morning snack.  Then an entire box of fish sticks for lunch, followed by soy yogurt.  He's only two years old.  He gets so hungry he begins to cry and beg for food, something he normally never does.

All by noon.

This of course was interrupted by another bowel movement so horrendous that it was both up his back and down his legs, soiling even his socks, not to mention his shirt, his pants, his arm, my jeans, our couch and the floor.  As soon as I got that cleaned up and a new diaper on, it happened a second time.

All this because of 1/4 of a slice of bread, two days ago.

I'm so angry I could spit.  And heartbroken that my baby is suffering needlessly.  It wasn't a case of incorrect labeling, or a misunderstanding, or accidental cross-contamination in a prepared dish.  It was a result of carelessness on the part of the people I pay to care for my son.  An accident, but a careless, unnecessary one that should have been prevented.

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