Joseph DeNicola Moment of Silence
Take a moment on Halloween #1Moment4Joe
Each year, I invite all via social media, to share a moment of silence in honor of my son Joseph DeNicola, who faced his last anaphylaxis reaction to milk protein on Halloween 2014 he was 7 sacred years old.
This is a moment for all of you, to stop and raise awareness and share a moment in his honor, with all of our friend’s and family, our extended family in the community, all of you. We are all healing together, and we all miss Joseph so very much.
I am asking for support on the day my son fought his hardest battle, faced our deepest fear. As a parent, I know most cannot even understand the trauma associated with thinking of what he faced, felt and we will not understand until we all take our last breath. I lost my son, my love of my life and I would never wish this pain and deep emotional heartache of it all on anyone. But he faced much worse, so my angel gives me the strength to carry on.
So I ask, PLEASE listen for a few moments and read how your one moment can save lives.
Never will I allow the lessons we have faced, to be unheard to not help the next.
Please… our experience is a call to helping the next. Please post a “public” post and use hashtag #1Moment4Joe so we can see how far he travels to spread awareness on Halloween, the day we lost our son.
Feel free to post your little ones pictures and leave a blessing or message, we do love to hear from all. It brings happiness on a very hard day for us all. We check the hashtag on face book and twitter, and we look at the years since 2014 that we have brought this awareness each year to helping bring awareness of Anaphylaxis, by sharing “Joseph’s Journey his story”.
When we are all ready to run out the door to start ringing for treats, I ask you to stop for 1 moment and think of Joseph.
It is not a myth that Anaphylaxis must be treated right away because it can cause death. Yes, you are at risk too. Those already aware of their allergies have a better chance of survival. Annual testing should always be completed. If determined to have an allergy by allergists do not leave without an autoinjector. Keep that autoinjector renewed each year. Expired autoinjectors caused death.
Joseph’s story tells the importance of time… and why we hold #1Moment4Joe annually.
Within moments coming in contact with his allergen Joseph was having trouble breathing. He was placed on his asthma treatment before receiving his autoinjector at on site of breathing trouble. He was past those few moments, that the autoinjector could have saved his life to getting the treatment required at the hospital, again please read his story to understand the importance of time. He was then given a second autoinjector. Since he was not responding to the first. It is then and within those few moments and incorrect steps the lesson. Just do it. Do not debate, if you know you have been in contact with an allergen please just use your ONLY life saving medicine. PLEASE…..
He was rushed by car to the hospital, just a few minutes away. Too long without oxygen he went into cardiac arrest. ALWAYS CALL 911 they can help with treatment before arriving at the hospital, please. Always call 911. It is then and within those steps the second lesson.
The miracle workers I call them, the doctors and nurses they revived him enough to place him on life support, but it had already been late without oxygen. His brain started to shut down. We spent the next few days watching and praying with thousands of you as his cells shutting and miracle medicines attempting to take replace those parts of the brain failing. With thanks to family and friends, we had beyond doctors coming in from all over, specialists. They sat with us in group settings, to explain the state each day.
We had now only moments left, he battled beyond to stay alive. I never left his side holding him and talked to him in his ear the whole time about heaven and angels. How can we comfort our child at this time, to prepare them for what we have not experienced, it is the hardest discussion to have and one I hope you never have to. As many of you came to visit and gave support. I am still there, it is still very much “day one” grieving parents call it for this mom. This world is not in any way the same, each day getting up is a battle, days are now labeled bad or good not M-F. So please, I ask all of you. Please be prepared….
Being prepared means……..
Everyone should know the signs of Anaphylaxis.
Awareness Read more here: Be Aware of Symptoms of Anaphylaxis; Severe Anaphylaxis and Asthma
So please take a moment this Halloween and remember :
- We are ALL responsible for preparing a safe day. No one wants to harm a child, let us hold empathy to offering a choice when they ring.
- Ask before you offer. When a child runs ahead of their parents or family or friends to be first at the next door, let us ask ” Are you allergic to anything”. Then offer a choice.
- Think ahead to having a choice. A few nonfood items can make a great substitute to a moment that can add value for many.
- Be prepared. Carry 2 – epinephrine and your cell phone.
- Know who will be with your child, are they prepared to help, do they know the signs? Stop ahead of Halloween to have a one on one with whoever is with your child, even if you have spoken about this before. Tell the story of my son, Joseph.. If a reaction takes place have the tools needed and use in this order. AUTO-INJECTOR FIRST before all other medications IF you suspect a severe allergic reaction, call 911! Always use epinephrine fast and first if you are at risk of life threating Anaphylaxis
- Read all labels. Not all labels are the same. Some products come in bigger sizes and are labeled one way, others come in smaller sizes with an entirely different label. Read the labels every single time.
- Have wipes on hand to wipe down faces, little hands and anything else your child may come in contact with. Make sure to accompany your child door to door, they should not be handling items if they are not old enough to know what they cannot have. Be the one to hold the treat bag.
- Make it a day that you visit homes that are participating in the TEAL PUMPKIN. This indicates that you are providing non food treats. Kids are aware when they see a teal pumpkin that they will have an alternative they to can enjoy this day. Including all is so important. Give me a toy instead of a dentist appointment any day.
- Host a truck o treat, organize a safe time if you are aware of a location that is willing to allow the event, you can make a wonderful day for so many if you organize. Learn more HERE: Host a Trunk O Treat
- Have fun! Make treasured memories, take lots of pictures 🙂 !!!!! Do not forget to tag #1moment4Joe on one public post so we can know you thought about Joe and he travels safely with you around the world, even if it is not a holiday in your country, take a photo or share a picture of your choice. We love to help all of our friends and family to check in on something through out the day to keep them happy that our Joseph is sharing to help the next on this day.
Time was the difference, auto-injectors work for severe asthma too. So please be prepared and act fast. Know the signs of severe reactions. You can learn more at AAFA.org
Many have asked for a brochure to hand out and share Joseph’s story on Halloween. Please feel free to print the following to help the next. JosephDeNicola.com Halloween Handout Brochure
I wish all a safe and healthy Halloween. Stop on that day, and think about Joe. I am sure he is walking right next to you all. Smiling.. Blessings and Love to you all.
Joseph, Mommy loves you!