“I can’t have peanut butter in my lunch,” Baylee said. We had just moved to Massachusetts from North Carolina.
“What?!” I was surprised, and a little angry. How could someone tell me what my kid could have for lunch, right?
Because Baylee was a big PB & banana and Fluffernutter eater, we had to make some changes. We tried sun butter (gross) and then realized we had to become creative with his lunches. He would take turkey sandwiches and cold pizza, and I bought him a Thermos. On cold days, he had leftover American chopped suey or SpaghettiOs with meatballs.
After some time, I learned more about peanut allergies. Thank God we don’t have them in our family, not because we’d miss peanut butter so much (which we would) but my gosh it’s a scary thing! I began to feel badly and my selfish anger turned into fear for those children, some who can’t even be in the same room with a peanut. Imagine sending your child to school and wondering if they would encounter something so small yet so toxic to them!?
Also, imagine trusting other people and putting your kid’s life into their hands. Are we truly trusting that other parents or guardians will not become lazy and accidentally send something with peanuts in their lunch or snack? What if a kindergartner grabs a packet of cheese-and-crackers and sneaks it into their bag not truly understanding what could happen to one of their classmates?
I would make peanut butter cookies and always worried I would forget and send them with him to school. Also, we would make peanut butter sandwiches. What if some of it was left on the surface where I made his lunch?
Peanut allergies are scary, and although I am happy we don’t have to deal with them, my heart goes out to the parents who send their kids into the world each day hoping they don’t encounter someone who is not necessarily callous, but simply careless.
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