My blood is boiling. And frying.
When my daughter was about 3 years old, i bought her her first doughnut one weekend so she knew what they tasted like.The next time was for her sleepover the morning after she turned 8.
Yes, she’s had them in between. But i didn’t buy them for her. She would have them at church after mass, at the park in the morning for a friend’s birthday party, and at a garage sale. I did buy her Indian fry bread a few times. I looked at it as culinary exploration of different cultures, we do live in the Southwest you know.
So… yesterday after school i served her a juicy, ripe, sliced nectarine as an after school snack. She told me she wasn’t hungry because a boy in her class brought in doughnuts for his birthday at school. That’s when the steam came shooting out my ears and my timer buzzed.
My daughter is going to have 27 more doughnuts in the next 9 months.
I say this because a few nights ago, at parent orientation at school, the classroom of parents were told to be careful what kind of birthday treat they bring in, because there are nut allergies in the classroom.
“Just bring doughnuts” was the recommendation.
So that is exactly what the next mom did. I was a room mom with her two years ago. She wants to make people happy and help out teachers. So she did what she was told. She brought in 28 doughnuts with icing and rainbow sprinkles.
The system has holes.
I don’t remember any standout birthday treats in my school growing up, although i do remember having them. The memory that stands out for me was in gym class, or P.E. as they call it. We had to crawl through a spanking machine! Weird and strange i know, but true! All your fellow classmates stood in a line and spread their legs. You would crawl through all the legs and they would spank you as you went by. It was scary, it was fun, it was crazy and it was memorable.
Are we going to keep going round and round in circles? Can’t the birthday person sit in a special chair and be sung to? Can’t he or she have special privileges that day? Does it always have to revolve around sugar? Aren’t we more creative than that?
I know i could exempt my daughter from the class treat, but then i’d be singling her out… for being health conscious. I could email the teacher, but then i’d be the mom who ruined it for everyone. But i emailed her anyways and offered to type up a sheet of other acceptable things children could bring in…like nut free stickers.
Teachers and parents need to realize they have a social responsibility to this young generation. Parents who feel as strongly as I do need to voice their concerns- at the very beginning of the year when you’re filling out all the paperwork. I offered praise to the team of teachers of my other daughter twice for their entire grade’s decision to ban edible sweets due to sugar concerns. Between birthday treats and star of the week treats, it saved me over 50 sweets for my little one. After all, we’re not in preschool or kindergarten anymore.
One third of all Americans will have Type 2 Diabetes by 2050 according to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC.) Sound far away? It would put your child somewhere between the ages of 40 to 50. And for me, that’s too young for a person’s quality of life to diminish. The CDC also reports that this is the first generation expected to live shorter life expectancies than their parents, and that 35% of U.S. kids are overweight or obese. Our youth are heading straight for a health crisis.
I’m not willing to accept that, are you? I don’t want them pricking their finger, monitoring their blood levels, having mood swings, bouts of unconsciousness and endless trips to the ER. I watched my dad go through it- it’s not fun. Not to mention the more extreme cases of coma, amputation and loss of eye sight.
Wake up America. Bring dark chocolate. Bring long stem strawberries. I know a mom that proudly brought baby carrots! Good for her. Heck, bring every kid a wrapped one dollar bill! Or do the nut free sticker idea. Go to Walmart’s pinata section and buy some cheap pinata toys! They’ll love the darn things. I think i’d even compromise and feel a little better with people bringing in just the doughnut hole or even a cake pop- a more appropriate, kid-sized portion and without all the sprinkles.
Just promise me that you’ll…
(Source: ExperienceLife.com & Lifetime Fitness Magazine / The CDC / Yale Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity.)