Overwhelmed, over run, overworked, sometimes just over it? Me too! Welcome to parent hood. Out of the mouth(s) of one of my babes “Life was never meant to be easy mum” and so it isn’t and that includes parenthood.
I like to compare it to swings and roundabouts. Up. Down. Up. Down. Weeeeeeeeee. Woah! Up. Down. Up. Down. Well you get it right. It’s fun, it’s addictive, it’s scary and it’s relentless. It’s immeasurable amounts of love and weetbix coated couches.
I’m Kailie Hetherington, chief blogger at mumkayles.com and creator of the MumKayles Kids Allergy T-Shirts. I am here to help you help your child with allergies stand out in the crowd and bring awareness to your community.
How I got here…
I was 17 when I had my first baby. Gasp! Yep and I have 4 all together (and I own a t.v in case you’re wondering). Jordan is 15, Rhiley is 12, Lacey is almost 2.5 and Konnor 1.5. Having babies so young hasn’t stopped me from reaching my goals. If anything it has taught me to reach higher and higher. I have used my early parenting role to my advantage.
From my babes I have learnt resilience, patience and how to see the world through someone else’s eyes. Which is particularly handy while trying to figure out why my toddler was bubbly happy one moment and laying on the ground screaming the next. You get it. I’ve gained their energy and enthusiasm for life which is lucky because they can be equally as good as sucking them both out of me at times.
From my teenagers I have learnt that life is rarely fair and perhaps more black and white than we make it. I have learnt that they are intelligent and worth listening to! They have caused me to question absolutely everything that I do and scrutinise myself to the core making me more honest and purposeful. No longer is it ok to tell furfies. Teenagers require thought and consideration and absolute accuracy. My eldest takes it the farthest when he needs the time read to the exact minute. He rolls his eyes as he says “it’s 21 past 2 mum not 2:20” and he walks away thinking I’m lazy and careless but it’s not just about the time it’s about them knowing that they can rely on you absolutely and unconditionally at all times.
Why Allergy T-Shirts?
So have I always wanted to sell Allergy T-Shirts? No. I am also half way through my teaching degree, which I will get back to as soon as I stop having babies.
On the serious side the biggest learning curve in my life has been having a child with severe multiple food allergies. Lacey has had health problems from birth but it is the fact that an every day product like milk or eggs can potentially kill her because of her body’s negative response to certain foods.
We are anxiously awaiting Lacey’s upcoming appointment with her Allergist to have her retested but her current confirmed allergies are to dairy, eggs, peanuts, treenuts, soy, fish and shellfish. Her first ever reaction was to ice cream being dropped on her cheek at 3 months old. Her worst reaction was to chickpeas (a legume closely related to peanuts) where she had a secondary reaction worse than the initial one and she has had non-life threatening reactions (but still scary and required an anti-histimine and monitoring) to raw tomatoes and tapioca.
Lacey has experienced anaphylaxis 3 times and it’s not until you witness your child in your arms struggling to breathe, limp, and/or blue and swollen that you fully understand what this means.
For all other parents of children with allergies this is why I do this. I do this because I need to do something for you, with you, because you have been through what I have been through and we are all here together.
A t-shirt may not save your child’s life in the way that their adrenaline auto-injector or a paramedic does (and is not intended to) but it will help you to feel like you are in control of something in a world that can be anything but when it comes to food allergies.
I have designed 3 Shirts (with more to come) to help you help your child stand out in public. Take them to day care, birthday parties, out shopping with a little extra ease that people know of their allergies and will strike u a conversation with you about the shirt before touching or feeding your child.
I wanted bold prints with clear designs to help other people understand Lacey’s allergy enough to keep her safe without overwhelming complete strangers about why they can’t touch her before washing their hands or feed her without having everything checked. I bet you want the same. Begone with the crazy ninja mum (or dad) thing that we do!
I hope that I have been able to achieve what you need in a T-Shirt and if not please be in contact with me and I will work with you to provide a shirt that works for you and your child.