Christopher just had a smell reaction on bus

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Well I sent my kids off as I do every morning. Started cleaning my house when my mom called me. Apparently while mom and I were on the phone the school called her to tell her Chris was pretty ill. My mom ran to get him and the nurce was waiting outside for them to pick him up very upset. Seems that someone was eating on the bus and the fumes from whatever it was caused his reaction. His lips were bluish and his face very whitish/grey. I ran him to Dr. And they gave him benedryl said he was surely having a reaction. Not as bad as if he ate it but he was faint/numb lips and tingling in his hands. He said the bus felt like it was smothering him. He is now laying on the couch and i will not let him out of my sight. His oxygen level was good though which helped. I just want everyone here to remember that when they are on the bus even things can happen just from sitting still and sleeping in Christophers case. Thank god he woke up because he was having problems with his breathing. If he hadn't woke up what would have happened. I am a mess right now and have not stopped my crying in a while. I said the Chris"I think this is gods way of giving us a reality check." At 16 he was hoping he would never feel sick from that again. I felt helpless and guilty that i was on the phone when my baby needed me. EVeryone here just hug your children today!! claire

On Apr 14, 2003

Claire, I'm sending a big hug your way! I was in your shoes just a few weeks ago and know how agonizing it is for your child to have a reaction. You are in my thoughts and prayers!

Take Care, Valerie

On Apr 14, 2003

Claire- so sorry to hear of your sons reaction. Hope he's feeling better soon. Had he had a smell-type reaction before? Take care- mae

On Apr 14, 2003

Claire, thank you for sharing that. I will be thinking of you and your son when I pick up my kids from school and hug them. They will not understand why I will be crying, but that's OK.

Thank you for reminding us what a blessing each and every reaction free day is. In the hustle and bustle of every day life I think we sometimes forget.

I'm so sorry you and your son had to go through that. I'm so glad he is OK. Don't beat yourself up about being on the phone. You didn't know.

------------------ Cynde

On Apr 14, 2003

The symptoms you are describing also happen during panic attacks.

Hyperventilating causes numb lips and tingling in hands.

Did he panic when he smelled the peanuts?

On Apr 14, 2003

To answer the question of hyperventilating. He was actually sleeping when he awoke from the not being able to breath. He said when he woke up he realized he could smell food that he had certainly never smelled before. Maybe he was getting nervous and that didn't add to it. Yes he has had one smell reaction before as bad as this one. The Dr. said of course he is having a smell reaction because whatever was being eaten was in the air. I am still looking at a very week boy on the couch that I think has got a lot of fear in him right now. He made a comment on the way home that just bothers me so bad. He said "boy mom if someone hated me enough they could kill me so easy and get away with it". what ever made him come up with that kind of thing to say. 16 years old and people insist it gets easier. NO Chris didn't have his epi with him. He forgot it in his locker at school. AHHHH yOu people are such great support at times like these when outsiders don't get it. thank you all. Claire

On Apr 14, 2003

Claire, I'm really sorry about what happened to Chris. It's tough enough getting through the teen years without having to deal with a severe food allergy.

It sounds like he had a "deep sense of foreboding" which is a classic symptom of anaphylaxis.

Does he have a epi-belt to keep his epi-pen in? That way he doesn't have to worry about always having it in his pocket as he can wear it all day long. They make some nice ones in black leather---very macho looking.

I hope he's feeling better real soon.

On Apr 14, 2003

Hi. Claire I hope your son is feeling better. This reaction is never good news but maybe it might have scared him into not forgetting his epi. I know everybody forgets things some times (keys, checkbook, etc).

I'm having a hard time getting my 10 yr. old to remember his. We hang it on our front door. The one we always use. We will be in the car and I'll say do you have your meds. And he'll say no I forgot. But he will remember to grab a snack and a book to read. We run back in the house for the epi's.

Could the bus driver carry an extra epi on the bus? The driver would need to know how heat/cold sensitive they are, though. Just a thought. Hope you all are feeling better soon.rj

[This message has been edited by rj (edited April 14, 2003).]

On Apr 14, 2003

Claire,

I'm so sorry this happened to Chris. His description of the reaction sounds exactly like what happened to me from allergy shots; it was surely a reaction. I hope he feels back to himself quickly. I'm sure [b]he'll[/b] feel better before you do!

Please don't beat yourself up for being on the phone - it's not like you were out drinking or partying at 10:00AM, for heaven's sake. Even mom's are entitled to pick up the phone once in awhile. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/wink.gif[/img]

HUGS}},

Amy

On Apr 14, 2003

Claire

Lots of hugs from Fla Thanks for sharing Love this site Synthia

On Apr 14, 2003

I'm very sorry Claire. Your post really hits home for me as I have recently contemplated Mariah riding the bus and the safety precautions outweighing her social needs. I thank you very much for posting your experience, and hope you all can rest and recover.

Gail

On Apr 14, 2003

Soooo sorry to hear this Claire. I hope you and your son are feeling better. Where is that vaccine when we need it? What a question...we always need it! This is so frustrating and so unnecessary...

[This message has been edited by kstreeter (edited April 14, 2003).]

On Apr 14, 2003

Claire, I am so sorry about your son's reaction.

How is he feeling now?

I hope you are feeling a little better also.

On Apr 15, 2003

Thank you so much for all of your concern. I just drove Christopher to school. He was extremely nervous about the fact that he may have to ride in on the bus. He was feeling very good considering what happened. I am not sure if I will ever be comfortable with him on a bus again. HE was a little angry with me that i talked to the bus driver and that someone may be angry at him now because they can not eat their breakfast on the bus. For one thing I told him kids should be ok with this they just need a reminder once in a while. thank god they are on vacation next week so we can just sit back and take a breather.My 11 year old will now carry an extra epi with her because she is on the same bus with him and he is off first so therefore she would give it to him and not hesitate I don't think. She is pretty smart and carrying of her brother. we talked last night and i told her the facts. #1. there is no time to cry and carry on. #2. no need to get grossed out because there is no blood involved. #3. He is your brother and you know how it can save his life. #4. think of him not you. she was really good about it. I really am glad i have these boards because you people really make me feel better about things. take care claire

On Apr 15, 2003

Claire, your daughter sounds like a wonderful girl who will take care of her brother. How does he feel about the arrangement? I hope it all works out for you. Cynde

On Apr 16, 2003

Dear Claire sorry to hear about chris, is he ok now? (williams says "I hope you feel better soon,and dont forget your epi-pens")

I think the idea of getting your daughter to carry an extra epi-pen is a fab idea. All my children know how to use one.

Please allow yourself a time to have a good cry, just to release a little tension, ( a bucket load of chocolate does seem to help with me,...each reaction that William has give me at least an extra 5 lbs on my bottom) thinking of you and your family , sarah

On Apr 16, 2003

Thank you for asking how he is doing. Yes he is doing great. Yesterday on the bus the drivers on every bus were issued information on what an anaphlaxis reaction is. they passed it around the bus and all children were told absolutly no food on the bus and what could happen if they didn't do as asked. Chris wasn't on the bus but my Daughter was. She said it went really well. One 6th grader was mad but that is fine he will get over it. He said "great just because some dipsh** gets sick we can't have food". this kid wouldn't agree if we told him it was raining and he would say it wasn't. No big deal. My daughter said she can beat him up anyway. Not that I encourage fighting but good to know. Seeing that they have cleared the buses of food Chris will be taking it this morning. He is very confident in doing so. I certainly will be on pins and needles this morning. Well time to make lunches for the kids. AHH that's right half day today for us. I guess just one lunch today. Take care Claire

On Apr 16, 2003

Claire,

My son is 18 and had an airborne reaction this Halloween at school. The teacher handed out Reese's candies to the class before. My son entered the classroom and his airway tightened off almost immediately.

The teacher noticed my son using his puffer and told him that there had been peanut candies in the room the class before.

My son left the room, used his Epipen, Benadryl and called home. We spent the rest of the day in the ER. He went home on steroids and Benadryl, at his own suggestion to the ER docs.

He did fine but despite a good oxygen level and no further reaction this was very depressing because it was his first airborne reaction. We were both frightened but we held it together and learned from the experience.

My son attends a very small private school in Los Angeles and the next morning he was surrounded by the entire school who for the first time realized the seriousness of PA. He found out he had admirers he never knew he had! That was the one positive that came out of this experience.

This might sound odd but I might suggest that your son not sleep on the school bus. He might have to find ways to keep himself awake and alert in a potentially dangerous situation. I know that with a teenager this sounds impossible but it might be worth a try.

If your son would like, maybe he and my son could trade emails. It might help to have someone his age share stories. My son will be attending college in the Fall and we are working right now with the college to get them prepared. It is scary and it is tough but I believe it is manageable because my son is very very alert.

Good luck Peggy

On Apr 16, 2003

Oh and by the way. Claire, do you have call waiting? I got call waiting when my children started to go off without me. I finally had time to gab on the phone but could not because the kids were out of the house. Call waiting saved my sanity. It might be worth the expense. Peggy

On Apr 16, 2003

Peg don't you think it is just as hard at the older ages as compared to younger. We need to give freedom but it is so so hard. I cried at the doctors office and they told Chris he was scaring us. He says " I scare her all the time". He was so cute. I try not to ever cry but it was to hard not to. He sleeps on the bus a lot. I have now got my daughter on high alert mornings. I have to laugh because I can just see her driving him insane. I cried when he was entering the bus this morning. I just prayed to God he would get home safely. My little guy comes out of the bedroom and asks why am I sad. I told him the truth and that If he hugged me a minute i would be just fine. Now I am fine. I will be glad now when Easter candy is out of everyones homes,because kids will have that in school. I know i sound rediculous but i worry about everything now. thank you so much for your posts. claire

On Apr 16, 2003

Yes Claire, It is tough in a different way for older kids, and parents of older kids. We are getting ready to let them go but their PA still follows them and we have a right to worry, NO MATTER HOW WELL WE HAVE PREPARED THEM!!

My son was not as sensitive as lots of little kids on this list but he is now. I don't know what I would have done if I had to handle some of the things the members handle now. Well I do know, I would have handled it just like everything else. My son would have done fine too.

I'm not posting at PA.com much these days. Feel free to use my email address if you want to chat further. It is nice to find a parent of an older child, I wish I had that when my son was younger. I'm almost always available.

Peggy

On Apr 16, 2003

Claire - I'm so sorry to hear Chris had to go through that. I'm glad to hear that things are working out now. My son will be 15 next month - he hasn't had an airborne reaction to that extent yet but we haven't ruled out that it can happen. Next year there won't be a school bus for his high school that is about four miles away - they have to ride the public transportation bus and there is no way I'll be able to have that be food free. I was planning on driving him every morning but hoping he'd take the bus home but now I'm not so sure. He carries his epi in his (50 pound!) backpack. Public transportation is another thing to wonder about as we prepare them to be adults.

Peg - I am [b]so[/b] glad to see you posting again

[This message has been edited by Jana R (edited April 16, 2003).]

On Apr 16, 2003

Claire,

Just wanted to say that I'm sorry about the reaction. My thoughts are with you and Chris. The aftermath of a reaction is horrible isn't it? Its like re-living all the same initial fears almost.

I am so glad that you and Peg are here, this has made me realize that its only different when they get older, not neccessarily easier.

Best wishes Claire,

Lana

On Apr 16, 2003

Claire, I am so sorry to hear about Christopher's reaction. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/frown.gif[/img]

Someone else suggested it above but I think getting "call waiting" is also something to think about. As soon as Jesse started school, I got call waiting, just in case I should happen to be on the phone (heaven forbid, a Mother on the phone during the day when her children are at school) and the school called.

This year my DH got a cell phone and what I have on my answering machine now is that if this is a school emergency, please call and then it says his cell phone number. I don't care if people calling have to listen to that, that is for times when I'm either on the computer (that's why I would also like high speed internet through cable) or out.

I am glad to hear that Christopher ended up back on the bus. I think if he had avoided going on it (I know you didn't want him to go on it and that's okay), it could have caused great anxiety for him.

When Jesse had the reaction either in the breakfast program or coming out of it in December month, I allowed him to stay home the next morning when I went over to do the cooking for the kids. I took his sister with me and dropped her off at class. Then, I came back home and got Jesse. But the following day, he was right back in the breakfast program with me. Something about falling off the horse and getting back in the saddle again quickly (that was what my DH said at the time).

I know what absolute horror you must be experiencing right now because I had post traumatic stress syndrome of some sort after Jesse's reaction in December month. I think it took a good two months for it to go away. Stop thinking about the "what if's" (i.e., what if Christopher hadn't woken up?) because that didn't happen.

I'm really pleased to hear that your daughter is going to be his Epi-pen back-up. I'm also with river on this one, I think perhaps Christopher should have an Epi-belt. I don't know, they almost look like workmen with their work belts around them if you can picture that. Not a *bad* look for a teenager to have, I would think.

Someone else posted above also that Christopher will probably recover from this a lot sooner than you. Take good care of YOU Claire and know that we all care about you here and care about Christopher and what happens with your family. You offer so much support, encouragement and caring. Please accept ours as easily.

As for crying - cry as hard as you can as often as you can without scaring the children (actually, I found crying *good* in the shower, no one can really hear you). It really helps release things for me (I don't cry very often and that's probably what's *wrong* with me) and it will just get it out of your system.

A wake-up call. Well, whether or not you and Christopher needed one, your family certainly got one. I'm so sorry, Claire. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/frown.gif[/img] Big hugs to you and all of your family. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

------------------

On Apr 17, 2003

Well As everyone here said. Chris will get over it before you Claire. YOu were right. Yesterday he didn't come home after school. Chris always tells me where he is and never goes without asking or calling. He decided to go to his girlfriends yesterday and thought I knew it. Well I was on the phone and panicking. Called every relative i have by the school. I finally called the girlfriends. Chris is there and claims the line was busy when he called. Ok maybe, I was wasn't mad just relieved. I told him after what happened Monday he needs to give his dear old mother time to chill. We actually laughed because i found him and he really didn't do anything majorly wrong. Just a typical OOOPs should have kept calling til someone answered. Claims to have forgotten the cell phone number that he has called a million times. The food free bus has me very happy. As far as crying I think i have that over now. We will see. Once again thank you for all of you help and as for the epi belt he has had one and will now keep it on again. Used to have a ninja turtle one when he was little. Now he is almost 17 maybe a girly one would please him. Just kidding. Claire

On Apr 17, 2003

My son has been wearing a belt pack that hangs off of his belt for years. It carries two epi pens, Benadryl and medical information I laminated for him. The first one was a belt pack I got from "The Walking Store" but recently he has a pack from FAAN. It is padded and meant to carry two epi pens. It has yellow writing on it so anyone who sees it will know what it is. It hangs off of his belt, it is not a fanny pack which he hates.

At first his elementary school tried to tell me he could not wear the pack but then I pointed to them that they were locking up his epi pens and the key could be anywhere. I told them he would wear his epi pen whether or not they gave him permission and they never said a word.

The pack is part of him, he wore it to his Bar Mitzvah, never takes it off.

Peggy

On Apr 17, 2003

Claire, was the bus not food free previous to Christopher's reaction?

The buses here are *supposed* to be food free, but the bus driver will catch kids eating stuff usually in the back.

I hope you're doing okay. Seems like Christopher is, which is good. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

------------------

On Apr 17, 2003

Cindy, as far as the bus goes there is actually a no eating at all policy. The thing is that they are gettin up and on the bus so early that most people don't mind if the kids are eating. I am just as guilty as sending mine with food as the next person.Chris has taken a bagel on the run and always brings his tea. We have never had a problem because kids are now drinking flavored coffee and bringing actual peanut butter and toast on the bus. The drivers have passed out literature and explained the allergy to the kids and we have had an excellent responce from everyone. You will have the occasional person who just refuses to get it and to them I say OH WELL. they are probably self centered and i wouldn't want anything to do with them anyway. Yes everything is going very well now. thank you claire

On Apr 17, 2003

Claire, I am so glad to hear that Christopher is back to normal (clearly!) and I am hoping that you will regain your equilibrium soon too!

Glad everything turned out okay in the end.

Shannon

On Apr 17, 2003

Claire,

Glad preventive measures are being taken to reduce the risk of this happenin' again. Glad he is OK- know it takes awhile for us Moms to calm back down as best we can after something like this-- sometimes I replay the scene in my head about a smell/contact reaction even 2 years later- I guess fishin' for clues as to how it happened in hopes of preventing another time. My thoughts are with you and Chris.

jan

On Apr 18, 2003

Mom is doing great today. Just because my kids are now on vacation and they can be happy and comfortable sleeping in all week. My parents took us to Burger King last night. Chris would not eat a thing. I have noticed him asking me about everything he smells but I am sure he just needs reassurance from me that there is nothing in the air that will hurt him. anyway You are so right about the kids get back to normal so much faster than the parents. Take care and have a great day. claire

On Apr 18, 2003

Claire,

Your son is correct, there ARE things in the air that will hurt him, even while he is sleeping apparently.

The feeling of doom that goes along with a reaction is a very powerful feeling and in our experience takes quite a while to settle down.

It is better that your son is aware of smells around him because he needs to know that if he senses something is wrong, he needs to trust his sense and get the heck out of there.

Even before we knew about his PA, my son was very sensitive to smells. He could not play with Play Doh because of the smell. He gagged at the smell of band aids since he was an infant, I could not hold him if I had a band aid on my hand.

I think this was some sort of protective mechanism that serves him even today because he is alway alert to what is around him and what could potentially harm him.

Your son's airborne reaction will follow him for a long time and will be part of what teaches him how to keep himself safe.

Peggy

On Apr 19, 2003

Peg I know that the airborne stuff is out there and even more so now. I think the way that I phrased the last post was as if I thought Chris was over reacting. What it is is that he is worse than ever right now. He wants me to explain what every smell is he is smelling. I find that since we have no PB in the house that when I smell it now it is extremly strong. I can not imagine the fear he lives in. I guess to a point I can because us parents live with a part of fear like that for them. I had a women start to ask me a million questions the other day as if it was impossible for him to have an airborne reaction. She was unreal. I just eventually ignored her and went on to my kids as if she wasn't even here. I think that after tomorrow things will be better. We are having a party for him during our Easter dinner at moms. Everything he has had before and it is all safe. Well take care claire

On Apr 19, 2003

Claire,

When my son smells something he does not recognize he will immediately ask if it is peanut butter. If he tastes something he does not like he will say it tastes like peanut butter.

He really does fine out there in the world and I guess PB is his frame of reference for anything he thinks he should avoid. I have to agree with him but I watch to see it does not get out of hand.

And he keeps a very close watch on his surroundings. He always has.

Any time we meet someone who seems less than impressed with the care he must take to avoid peanuts we scare the heck out of that person. My son will say "you understand that if I eat one tiny bit of peanut I won't just get sick, I'll DIE, and I'll die very quickly all over your floor!"

That usually gets their attention and they lay off of him. He is so tired of explaining his limitations to people who should be focusing on the many positive things he brings to every situation he enters.

He had one incident in third grade or so when another mother offered him a PB sandwich telling him he should have outgrown his PA by now. He refused her, called me and waited in their driveway till I came to get him. I took him home after I BLASTED that idiot mother and he never played there again.

Peg

On Apr 21, 2003

Don't you just love the way so many people will say " he should be over that allergy by now." When i tell them that our Dr. says he will never outgrow it because it is so severe they look at you as if they know more than the Dr. Peg you must have been so angry at the lady in 3rd grade. Imagine the nerve of her. My father in law always jokes with Chris when we walk in the house he will say."Hey Chris we made PB for you." That just isn't a joke and he thinks he is so funny. Those are the kind of people we just don't need in our lives. well time to pick up this place from the Easter mess. take care claire

On Apr 21, 2003

Claire: I am so glad that Christopher is doing better. I was sad to hear of his reaction. I think of you and Peg and glad that both of you are posting again. I too have a peanut allergic teen and struggling with the independent issues. In many ways it doesn't get any easier there are just different issues to deal with. By the way, you mentioned that Chris has a girlfriend. How does he handle this and her avoiding peanut products (if she does). This is a big worry for me, but that time hasn't come yet. Our son will be 15 this August. Just for your information-our son carries his epipens(two of them) in a pencil case in his binder-which he takes everywhere in school. Take care Claire and hope you had a nice Easter break!!

On Apr 22, 2003

nutcase,Christophers girlfriend completly avoids foods that chris can not eat. I just hope the two of them work out because her whole family seems to cater to Chris. They are wonderful people and have called me to see what kinds of food they should have around. Actually he only eats here but she understands his fear and doesn't pressure him to eat at their home. thanks for the pencil case idea also. Take care and good luck. claire

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