Sunday, November 13, 2011

How to "do" GF and DF at school...

School. That's a hard place to keep your kid safe from foods they shouldn't eat. Especially when said kid is 5 years old and not even sure what gluten is. About a month ago I had this crazy idea that Rylan's stomach aches might be cause by dairy. His dad, Les, has had issues with dairy nearly his entire life, so it wasn't that crazy of a thought. So, I marched Rylan in to preschool and informed his teacher that we were going to try out a diary free diet for a while and see what happens. She was very encouraging and said that there was another child in his class who was also dairy free. She even said she had pretzels in her desk for the rare occurances that the snack that day had dairy in it. And it went well. Dairy products are so easy to recognize and identify. Even Rylan knows what is and isn't a dairy product. Oh, to go back to those days!

After 2 weeks, the "issues" were not every day but still happening. We even had him at the ER one afternoon, almost positive he was having an appendicitis. I told Les that I had an even crazier idea- that Rylan might have a gluten sensitivity. Not even knowing the full extent that gluten was used in our lives, I KNEW it was going to be hard. And, again, I walked into the school and informed the teacher that we were trying GF out while still sticking with DF. I was armed with a $5 box of GF/DF "cereal bars" for the days that Rylan couldn't eat the class snack. That first week he had to eat his special snack every day. Who knew that preschoolers eat gluten for every snack??!! In his classroom each child gets a week that they are designated as the special person and that week they are in charge of bringing a snack for the entire class each day. The next week I think he was able to eat the same snack as the class one time. He has had such a great attitude about all of this, even the day that he had to eat a fruit cup while the rest of the class had cupcakes. That day I sent an email to the entire class asking them to inform me of when they were bringing in birthday treats so I could be sure to bring a GF cupcake for Rylan. I have gotten 2 responses.

Well, Rylan is special person this week and tomorrow is his birthday. Hooray for the GF/DF chocolate chips cookies I baked tonight and the fact that for one entire week he will be able to eat the same snack as the rest of his class!

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