The first time I really understood what allergies were was when I got a large rash and swelling around my right eye; just like my dad, and his mother, I was allergic to chocolate. A few short years later my brother would receive the same diagnosis when he was rushed to hospital after accidentally ingesting some while at daycare. We were officially a chocolate free house. Children typically love chocolate and women typically love chocolate; I was a 0 for 2. Throughout my childhood I got a lot of sympathetic and surprised looks. At first I felt bad for myself but, to be honest, I didn’t really miss it that much as I’d never really gotten a chance to like it. The worst part about growing up with a chocolate allergy was that I often got left out at birthday parties and school events- the cake was always chocolate. However, these feelings all changed when I realized that I was a superhero: a Halloween superhero.
Most children plot out their trick or treating routes with the goal of getting as much chocolate as possible. They know which are the “good” houses and which ones give out the healthy food/bad candy. However, despite being allergic to chocolate and wanting the candy, I usually ended up with at least half of my loot being inedible to me. Sometime around 5th grade I suddenly realized that I held the most valuable currency possible to an 11 year old. I started trading my chocolate for the candy I liked; I was a Halloween superhero. In October and November I was everyones favourite person and the looks of pity turned to looks of admiration. I used this new knowledge to turn my allergy from a negative into a positive. Instead of feeling left out at events, I got my share of chocolate and used it to make a new friend. As I got older I always had an answer to the question “tell us something unique about yourself,” and I kind of liked the attention it got me.
This love continued into adulthood and Jay took full advantage of it: whenever we got chocolate he would get double! The day I found out I had grown out of my allergy I think a little piece of Jay’s soul cried. I still don’t eat much chocolate, but it’s nice to have the option once and a while. On Halloween I always try to give out a mix of chocolate and candy because deep down I’m always going to be that little girl praying for candy.