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Competitive Dance with Food Allergies

By TAG member Jacqueline See-Tho and Gina

One year, before one of my Nutcracker performances, my mom gave me a giant version of one of my favorite candies to celebrate (specifically, a giant banana Laffy Taffy). I excitedly ate it about 45 minutes before the show, not a very wise move in general. A couple of bites in, I started feeling bad and strange. I recognized it as an allergic reaction and immediately took Benadryl. When I checked the ingredients, I realized that this big version had egg in it.

We later found a similar problem with my brother’s giant sweet tarts, but luckily, he did not eat them first. We had never expected this as I had had LaffyTaffys countless times before. Fortunately, I started feeling better and felt good enough to go on stage. My friend’s mom was a stagehand at that time and we let her know what was going on. She made sure to look out for me while I was performing and let me know where she would be if I needed to step off stage because I was feeling unwell. I ended up being okay and was able to get through the show. This was just a reminder to me to never get too comfortable and trusting and to always check ingredients no matter how many times I have had something.

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