Saturday, November 28, 2009

Thanksgiving Feast FAIL for Peanut Allergy

OK, maybe B's Thanksgiving Feast at school wasn't a total FAIL.

But get this.

I walk into school with B's stuffing muffins in hand (they were a HUGE hit BTW - the other stuffing mom's stuffing wasn't touched - I actually felt a little bad) and asked the teacher if anything had nuts in it.

She said, "Don't worry, the kids know enough not to give B anything with nuts."

In my mind I've got an inner monologue going:

"Oh, you mean the kids who know basically nothing about food allergy (save for 2 others) and who can't READ know not to give her nuts?!?! Are YOU nuts lady?"

I ALMOST laughed in her face, like are you out of your cotton picking mind?!?

But I said, "it's not the obvious nuts I'm worried about, it's the hidden ones. Mind if I take a look at what you're serving?"

And I did. And everything was safe for B. Awesome! Off I went to work/errands/etc.

Cut to pickup.

On the way home, B tells me that she couldn't have the dessert at said feast. I probed, because sometimes she actually CAN have the dessert, but she gets scared/worried about it containing nuts and doesn't eat it.

"Why couldn't you have it?" I asked.

"Because it had a crosstamination warning" (her words, not mine).

"So what did you have? (thinking stupidly that her teacher surely gave her one of the safe snacks in the bag I put in the classroom)"

"Nothing. Neither did M (who has a milk allergy) or M (who has a peanut allergy too)."

So I say "Wanna go to Starbucks for some chocolate milk since you didn't get dessert?"

That went over well. So we did.

But inside, I'm getting annoyed.

I mean, why couldn't the stupid (yes I said it!) teacher tell me that morning that they would have a dessert that wouldn't be safe???? WTF (yes I said it!)??? I could have easily gone home and whipped something up (I'm all Martha Stewart like that). Why didn't the jackass (yes I said it!!) use one of the safe snacks I provided months ago???

So frustrating.

But B, wasn't angry. So why am I?

Needless to say her teacher and I are going to have a LONG chat on Monday about all of us.


Anonymous said...

I understand it. You went to all of that effort for B to have a treat if there was an issue at school, and that was not followed. Also, the whole adult responsibility vs placing adult responsiblity on the Kindergaten children for goodnes sake.

In my daughter's preschool the teacher got it last year, but her teacher this year as very lax until my daughter had a reaction, NOW she is taking it seriously. That is a problem when the lives of children are in her care! Needless to say my husband, myself, the teacher, and the director of the school are having a problem solving discussion.

Anonymous said...

As I'm reading this entry I find myself nodding, yep...been there. I've basically told teachers in the past that if there is an occasion where food is to be serve please let me know. Rather than DD be left out, I'd send along food. Seriously, I'd rather provide the food for the entire class myself...atleast then DD can safely join in. But time and again I've witnessed cookies been offered to all children other than my child (exact quote..."everyone may take a cookie except for R") I could not fathom excluding a 5 year old like that.
Love you blog, BTW.

Anonymous said...

Okay, I have to ask, the rest of the meal that was safe----how did you know it was safe? This is an ongoing issue for us. Do you trust the kitchens of your daughter's classmates and friends? Do you trust that no one ate a peanut butter cookie and touched the counter ten minutes before that other stuffing was made. Even my sil will make a birthday cake, tell me it's safe, then remember right before ds takes a bite, that it is not safe. I always tell everyone that it isn't that my kitchen is any cleaner, or that I am any more careful, but simply that I don't keep anything with nuts in the house---the truth is though that i just don't trust them. Isn't that terrible? I let ds eat at my mom's, dh's mom's, and my sister's house . That's it.

Anonymous said...

I for one am just happy to hear you venting. As a parent of two allergy kids, I know how frustrating these situations can be. WTF is right! You go girl!
I think that we NEED to vent and let of steam occasionally - keeping our kids safe is stressful and our vigilance must be constant. When a trusted caregiver of our child ignores our simple requests, it is maddening.

Anonymous said...

would love to hear how your chat goes with her teacher. Srsly. if you care to share...
Last week, the PRINCIPAL (yes I am yelling) read a story to all of the kids in my daughters elementary class. T he plot was - nothing turned out and the only thing that was left was for Thanksgiving was crackers and liverwurst. the school nurse calls me to ask permission if my kid could eat it. Luckily I was in the office, luckily I work very close to the school. I went over deemed everything safe (and liverwurst - blech). And then proceeded to worry that my kid may gag over liverwurst. Low and behold she came home and told me she LOVED liverwurst. "who knew" in her words! My moral is- we are sometimes far more (rightfully) concerned than these small children...and the adults (teachers PRINCIPALS) need to think these things through. often they do not, so it is about the allergy parents teaching, training, guiding and picking your battles.

Luckily at this point B doesn't care or push the envelope. Hopefully it stays that way!

Stay strong, vigilant. No one else will! And do share if you are willing.


I feel your pain!

ChupieandJ'smama said...

Same thing happened here! You know I went and asked about the friendship stew only to accidently find out about the cornbread. At pick up, they came out with apples made to look like turkeys. And they used candy to decorate them. NO ONE TOLD ME. Even though I went and asked about the food AND made a point to tell them that the cornbread wasn't safe and to put in safe guards for J due to the cornbread. He didn't use the candy, they gave him blueberries (THANK GOODNESS), but why not tell me about the darn candy? I'm so frustrated.

Anonymous said...

I am laughing so hard at your blog post. I have the same issue at my kid's school and have made nearly verbatim remarks. Hang in there!

Cheryl said...

So very much the same thing here. It doesn't seem to be taken seriously at all. We're about to change schools and I am getting the feeling that this school and teacher are really going to be on it and I'm hoping my feeling is right. The teacher suggested I bring in a bunch of frozen cupcakes to leave in the freezer for kids birthday parties and the like and I have to tell you, I almost cried! It was so nice to see someone take it seriously!

PS - I went so far to keep him home from the Thanksgiving feast because I happened to monitor the Halloween feast and there were cookies there that said "May contain peanuts". I FREAKED OUT. As a school administrator, why would you buy those cookies!?