Caleb (our eldest son) has a hope. It is a simple hope. He hopes to one day be able to eat food that many children eat on a daily basis. Foods such as ice cream from an ice cream truck. He is not able to eat these foods due to a severe peanut allergy. Although the doctors can not say exactly what will happen if he eats peanuts, by his allergy testing they can predict that the reaction would be severe. A common severe reaction is anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis is a serious allergic reaction that is rapid in onset and may cause death. Caleb is unaware that his allergy may cause death but does know it will make him very sick and would require a shot and trip to the hospital. Being a child, he thinks he should just be able to take a medicine to fix the problem. Unfortunately, there is no medicine or treatment at the time. Caleb wants his hope to be a reality, so he wanted to take steps to make his dream come true. He asked us (his parents) if he could have an ice cream stand and sell peanut safe ice cream and raise money to buy medicine. Since there is no medicine, we explained to him we could raise money and then give it to an organization that was trying to find a treatment. He agreed that was just as good of an idea.
Saturday, August 28Th at 2pm, Caleb’s Caleb Cream Stand was open for business. Many family members and friends came to participate. Caleb and his siblings wore Caleb Cream t-shirts made for the occasion. Before taking his place at the stand to hand out ice cream, Caleb asked to give a little speech. He stood before his guests and said, ” My name is Caleb. Welcome to Caleb Cream. I have a peanut allergy and lots of foods will make me sick, like peanut butter. Please come to Caleb Cream and come again next time”. He wrote his speech all by himself and was very proud to be able to give it in front of his guests. Caleb then got a stool to help him see over the stand. He took the orders and we helped hand them out. The guests were directed to a donation box to put in as much money as they were able to give. Caleb’s face lit up as he handed out the ice cream and other items. He was very proud of himself and was happy to have guests to share the occasion with. The various ice cream items included, homemade chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry Caleb cream, Caleb’s chipwiches, Caleb’s cupcake cones, ice pops and bottled water. The event lasted about two hours. At the end, Caleb stood and thanked his guest for coming. Before the event, we talked with Caleb and together set a goal of raising $100. When Caleb gave his closing speech, he was happy to announce he had raised $150. After that he received $30 more, for a total of $180, almost double his goal. Caleb Cream was a great success and by requests from all the wonderful guests will now be an annual event.
You can make a difference at any age, you just have to put your hope into action.
One little boy. One severe allergy. One big hope. One great success.