As for the allergy test itself, we could not have had more pleasing results. Namine was tested for cats, dogs, mold, shellfish, weeds, eggs, and dairy. Everything came back negative. Thank goodness she didn’t get our allergies; both Jessica and I are allergic to cats and dogs, and I’m very allergic to mold and weeds. (My doctor says I’m not allergic to shellfish, but if I eat a single shrimp then I get a funny aftertaste and I feel like I need to vomit. If that’s not an allergy, I don’t know what is.)
Of course, these positive results leave us with a perplexing situation: if it’s not allergies, then why is Namine getting sick so much? We’ll be calling Namine’s pediatrician later, to see if she has any insight. I have only one other thought – that it’s because she’s only fairly recently gotten rid of the trach.
Trached kids get sick very easily. The stoma (hole in the throat where the trach tube resides) is basically an open wound, easily entered by germs and sickness without having the body’s natural filter that exists with the nose and mouth. From what I’ve read and seen in Namine, post-trach kids can still get sick easier. We also have to take into account that even though Namine doesn’t have a trach anymore, she still has a narrower airway than her peers; that’s why she gets croup so easily. Hopefully, as she ages, this will improve.
We’ve already started to see some change in her from getting rid of the trach. Having a trach – having a way to bypass the nose and mouth – results in a lessening of the senses of taste and smell. We saw evidence of this even after her decannulation when she ate nearly a quarter of my Chipotle burrito. (I always get the shredded beef, which is pretty spicy.) But recently, we’ve eaten less spicy things and Namine has declined eating it in favor of blander food, declaring, “It’s so spicy, Haha!” This makes me glad because it assures me of what was previously unknown; we’ve been told by ENT that not all kids can fully regain their sense of taste. But based on what we’ve seen so far, Namine is starting to get hers back just fine.