Monday, May 09, 2011

Food Allergy Awareness Week: He Reads Labels


This week is Food Allergy Awareness Week. It just so happens it is also the week before a big PTO event at my school (and I am sort of a co-coordinator of it...). I'm hoping to post about my son's peanut allergy this week, in-spite of my insane schedule.
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On Saturday, it happened. My son read a label when I did not.

We were at my 3rd son's soccer game. I was not thinking about food allergies because my 2nd son was not supposed be getting food. Only the kids on the team get the snack. Except when kind parents share. They gave my first son a snack and my daughter, and then ran out of snacks. So, my oldest shared with my 2nd son. Problem solved.

I was exhausted. This was game 3 of 3 games on rainy soccer Saturday. I was single parenting it with four kids.

Ok, great. Snacks- everyone is happy. Perfect.

Now, let's get to the car.

I am hightailing it to the car and I look back at my son that is dragging himself at a snails pace. He looks at me sadly and says,

"But, momma, this is not safe for me. It says, 'May contain peanuts'."

I stopped.

I put both of my hands on his arms and I looked him straight in the eyes.
"David, you did a great thing. Thank you. Thank you for reading the label."

My oldest son gave him a juice box instead of the sugary cereal bar. While I will never know if the "May Contains Peanuts" warning would have meant harm for him, I do know that we shouldn't take chances with his food allergy. I also know he is paying attention to food labels.

The guilt I felt for not reading the label was suffocated by the satisfaction I felt from him reading the food label.

What a beautiful thing to see my 1st grader reading food labels.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

We had a scare this weekend too - I bought a bottle of oyster sauce for stir fry months ago and finally needed to open it. When I took it out of the cabinet, I read the ingredients again, as I do with any item I open for the first time at home. To my surprise, a few lines under the ingredient list that said "contains wheat, soy, shellfish, fish" was "made in a facility with treenuts and peanuts" - which I had not noticed at the store and could have made for a bad situation. I couldn't believe I totally missed it the first time around at the store!

Nicole said...

You are doing a great job!! I always feel sad, too, when I see my son having to take precautions for himself. It always hits home to me at those times, that he will be dealing with this his whole life. But how great it is that he knew how to read that label. What a responsible young man!

sharon said...

Good job, David!! Jane Anne, you've done so well educating him and everyone around him.

Linda said...

I am so proud of David it brings happy tears to my eyes. He has always been dillagent about making sure his food is safe. This is because you have taught him with love and not fear. Great job being the Mom that you are.

Beth E. said...

That's awesome! Your son is taking responsibility for his food allergy issues. I agree with the others...you've taught him well. :-)

Carmom said...

That is so awesome! It's so great that he has learned to take responsibility for his food allergy. He has had such a positive and encouraging mom and family who have helped him to deal with something that is sometime so difficult. Good job!