Sunday, October 16, 2011

Folk Festival, old friend allergic reaction!

Yesterday was a beautiful day. An old friend of Zev's family, Ed, invited us to drive to Richmond, Virginia, to attend the annual Richmond Folk Festival. The drive was beautiful; completely blue skies, weather was perfect and warm but not too hot and the festival played some great music!
When we arrived at the Festival, we walked around and grabbed a snack and sat down to listen to some blues music.
We then walked inside the Dance Pavillion where Ed said he would meet us, and I sat inside while Zev went to get us some lunch. Zev bought some Chicken Pad Thai for me and a German bratwurst for himself. He had a couple of bites of my Pad Thai and then had his bratwurst. The Zydeco music reminded me of lovely Louisiana. It was so nice and sunny...I was really enjoying the moment!
About 30 seconds after he finished his bratwurst, Zev started to get a sharp pain in the middle of his stomach, just underneath his breastbone. He stood up and I asked him if he thought it was gas. When he said that he had never had a pain like this before, I became really concerned. I thought that he might be having a heart attack. I asked him if he could put his arms up above his head (ok I read in Good Housekeeping that you ask stroke patients if they can do this; I don't know why I asked Zev if he could do it) and then asked if he was feeling tingling sensations in his arms or a shortness of breathing. He said no to all my questions "I'm fine" but we still walked towards the first aid tent. Once we reached the first aid tent (THANK GOODNESS we were at a festival with a first aid tent), he said that he was feeling better. About a minute after he said this though, we both noticed that his arms, legs and stomach area were developing an immediate rash. His skin turned very red and he developed these large white bumps all over his body, including his neck and scalp! We went inside the EMT tent (the EMT later told Zev "I thought you two were arguing, but now that you are here, I figure that your wife was trying to get you to come inside, but you were saying no. Is that right"!) Anyway, they begin to take Zev's blood pressure and talk with him to make sure that his breathing is not compromised. Zev then turned to the EMT guy and said "I am getting tunnel vision. I am warning you that I will probably faint." Well my blood pressure sky rockets at this time, and as we lay Zev down, I am saying to him "stay calm, stay calm." Zev later tells me that he was feeling calm but that I was starting to freak out!! Some more EMT's arrive and they talk about taking Zev to the hospital to figure out what was going on. One of the EMT's tells Zev that his symptoms were typical for an allergic reaction to something. The fact that his symtpoms began almost immediately after eating indicated that he had probably had an allergic reaction to one of the foods. We explained to the EMTs that Zev had eated a lot of bratwurst in Germany. They suggested that the Pad Thai may have had traces of seafood in it. Neither Zev nor I eat seafood as we don't care for the taste. Zev has probably eaten more seafood than I have in my life, but he has never been tested for allergies. We concluded that the Pad Thai may have been scooped out using the same utensils used to scoop out shellfish or some type of fish (it had a fishy taste to it; perhaps from the fish oils). Long story short, after observing Zev for about 15 minutes on the ground, by which time his skin returned to normal and then having him sit up, they said that we could go home, but that we had to stop by a pharmacy on our way home to pick up some Benadryl for Zev to take. Poor Zev!!!! I had to drive home (this probably stressed Zev out more than any allergic reaction) but thankfully the Benadryl knocked him out and he slept the whole way home!! We were able to finally meet up with family friend Ed, who was a super sweet guy. We will definitely have to catch up soon; either in Richmond or with us here!
{BTW: Zev asked me to snap these pictures; I was still too concerned to even think about the camera, but he wanted me to record the moment...}
His bumps had gone down by this stage...
Getting his blood pressure taken...
We finally met up with Ed! He knows Zev's mum, Judy, since they were in grade school! Super nice guy. We both hope to spend more time with him in the future, now that we live in the same state! (Notice the EMT guys in the background?!!)
Stopping by the pharmacy on the way home...

For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.
Isaiah 41:13.


Lindsey said...

Way to go Zev...always thinking about the blog even in adversity. I like it!

zevandfi said...

I know, right!!!