Living with allergies is exhausting.
Making breakfast, lunch and dinner every day wears on me. Having to make phone calls to every thing I ever want to sign Ben up for wears on me. Ensuring that we always have some Benadryl and the Epipen wears on me. And jumping every time the school calls just gets old.
But somehow, when I am at my most worn out by the whole allergy thing, I see the silver lining.
Recently one of the moms in Ben's class shared a story with me. She was in charge of the "Winter Party" at school. We had connected about what Ben could and couldn't eat, and I had, of course, offered to assist. But she wanted to take it on... alone... (this is not the silver lining, but rather a warm fuzzy).
She had an idea about this fun crafty food idea that she wanted to make. You know one of those "Gingerbread House" experiences often featured in parenting magazines. But she couldn't quite figure out how to make it work given Ben's limitations.
So she thought some more.
And in that second thought, forced by Ben's allergies, she decided that the perfect winter party activity would not be some junky, but oh so cute, snack-craft activity, but rather it would be having the children assemble soup kits tht would in turn be given to a homeless shelter or food pantry in Indianapolis.
The party was a hit. The kids worked together to use their measuring skills to fill Ball jars with a variety of dried ingredients -- peas, noodles, spices and the like. They also made cute label cards to accompany the soups. Then the kits were delivered into the community where they provided a hot meal to over 500 people!
In that moment, the mom realized that because of Ben's allergies, she was forced to take the road less traveled. And that road less traveled ended up having a far wider reach!
It is a journey worth going on and we are lucky to be on it with our group of special kids.