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For any parent currently going through the hell that is living with eczema and an allergy diagnosis, especially in the first few months whilst trying to gain control, I'm sure they'll agree that the nights are the absolute worst time in any given 24hrs. They are the absolute pits! Especially the middle of the night (2-4am), when everything seems to just feel worse than ever. You feel incredibly alone, more so than during the day, with everyone else in the house asleep (or at least they are trying to, in spite of the god awful screaming from an uncomfortable, unhappy and sore baby).

It's funny how you go through difficult situations, accepting what is happening, and trying to deal with it the best possible way that you can. That was us for the first 16 months of little dude's life. Accepting the horrible card he'd been dealt, and trying to find a way of fixing it.

So, it was crunch time. After months of fighting, and finally getting the allergy testing done that Callum desperately needed, we now faced a new monumental challenge! I thought it was going to be so easy once his allergies were confirmed. I'd know what to keep him away from, and still be able to feed him with no problem, and finally have the chance to try and get his eczema under control. How very wrong I was!

Straight after receiving the allergy results, I remember hitting my first real challenge as it was time to give 'el snottio' some lunch (and nervous energy had made me quite hungry by that point too!). Normally this wouldn't have caused any problems, but now, knowing I had to eliminate a multitude of food types, what on earth was I going to do?!

After months of battling, and endless suffering on Callum's part, we finally had answers, and they made a lot of sense based on his reactions.....

In the run up to allergy testing day, or 'd' day as we called it, there was an ever increasing level of concern. We were asked to stop giving Callum his antihistamine medicine a minimum of 48hrs before the allergy testing was due to take place. The problem with this, it helps Callum get through his day with a lot less discomfort, and would mean virtually no sleep for the 2 nights beforehand. Scary when you consider that sleep time is the only true relief for our little 'el snottio'.

When Callum gets a simple cold or virus, he isn't like the rest of us, and able to take it in his stride. Sadly, it literally knocks him for 6, and makes him very very ill and very fast, scarily fast in fact.

Whilst the battle continued (and continues to this day) with the ever more resilient eczema, an increasingly frustrating battle was also raging on. From the first time Callum was admitted to A&E and saw the consultant dermatologist, and at every weekly clinic appointment and all the GP appointments in between, I made increasingly louder noises about allergy testing. It fell on totally deaf ears!

So after the emergency dash to A&E, and subsequent half a pharmacy worth of drugs, ointments, creams, gels and so on, you would forgive us for thinking that would be it, no more trouble, no more suffering, and the journey ending there. Hahaha yeah right!

The sheer volume of cream required to keep Callum comfortable in the early days of treatment meant that huge pumps of cream were in constant supply. Our daughter very quickly named it 'operation slick' which stuck with the whole family, and described perfectly the situation we were all in.

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