I used to be such a good mom. I would get my kids up early every morning, get them dressed, fix their hair, cook a REAL breakfast from scratch, sing the national anthem, have scripture study and family prayer and send them off to school. I'm not kidding. I used to do that. It was a pain in the butt. I didn't mind cooking, but getting up early after being up most nights with a baby at some age was exhausting. My husband tried to inspire me to enjoy our early morning devotionals but, I was a whiner and we soon gave up.
I regret this now more than I can say.
I am not a complete loser as a mom now, I still cook now and then. I admit I buy cold cereal but I avoid high sugar ones, like cinnamon toast crunch and coco pebbles. I don't care what anyone says, chocolate for breakfast is not good. Well, except for chocolate chips in waffles now and then....blame my mom for that one. I try to feed my kids healthy food. Working full time does make it hard though.
Being at the school for lunch hour has been very interesting. I used to send home made lunches with all my kids. I would use home made whole wheat bread, all natural peanut butter, home canned fruit preserves, an apple or orange, cheese stick, and possibly a yogurt. Yeah, back in the day. Today my kids make their own lunches. Truth be told, they do really good. I don't make bread as much so we use store bought whole wheat bread. They don't love PBJ so we do turkey or egg salad. I buy organic crackers and they take some fruit or veggie. I guess I trained them well in one area of their life.
It makes me sad when I see what some of the kids bring to school in their lunches. I always walk around and tell the kids to eat their 'good food' first. This is supposed to refer to the non-sugary part of their lunch. You know, their sandwich or wrap or thermos of spaghetti. Whatever their 'main course' is from home. There are many times when I have to really look to find something that qualifies for the 'good food' part of their lunch. Today there were about ten 'crustables' that had to qualify. Sorry, those are dessert. One little girl had the following in her lunch: gogurt, cheese crackers, fruit roll up, chocolate chip cookies, juice box. That. Was. It. This little girl is in kindergarten. I am in her class a lot so I get to see her in action. She cannot sit still, she bounces around the room, she doesn't follow directions, she doesn't seem to notice any boundaries, and she can't concentrate worth beans. I wonder.....if she ate some real food would she do better? She has two older brothers that seem to have the same sort of problems. Their lunches are no better.
I wonder what these kids eat at home? I wonder how long it will be before they are diagnosed as having learning disabilities, ADD, ADHD, or put on some sort of medication. I'm not blaming it all on their diet, they dad is a piece of work too. He was kind enough to tell me off when I tried to direct him to the proper line for pick up after school one day. Shame on me?
I love being with the kids at school. I feel like I am doing some good. I see the kids that need a bit of extra attention and I try to help them feel good through out the day.My heart breaks for the boys that lost their dad a few months ago....I give them hugs every day. I see the kids that are there early and picked up late, after the after school care. I hear the little girl that says she doesn't have a mom or a dad. I wonder about the kids that come with their hair unbrushed and their clothes wrinkled. I look at my own kids and wonder if anyone notices them at their schools. Do they see needs that can be met? Do they see them as people with individual worth? Are they more than a name on a roll?
I remember when I was thinking about pursuing a degree in special education. A teacher at my son's school told me not to do it. I was surprised, because many other people had told me I should. She told me it would break my heart every day. There are so many kids that she saw that needed help and services but just didn't qualify and she couldn't help them. It is sad. It seems we focus so much on new fangled ways to teach math that we forget there are people inside these kids.
I can't be a parent to all the kids at school. I can't feed them all a good lunch. I can't make up for their own parents that are idiots that can't even use a cross walk. All I can do is help them feel safe and important while they are on my watch. I pray someone does that for my kids too...cause I said so.
Photo credit: http://www.google.com/imgres?q=images+of+sugar+in+lunchboxes&hl=en&client=safari&sa=X&rls=en&biw=1366&bih=605&tbm=isch&prmd=imvns&tbnid=EjGUypArZrxxbM:&imgrefurl=http://www.collectorsweekly.com/articles/vintage-70s-lunch-boxes-revisited-when-pop-culture-ruled-the-playground/&docid=GSdwWZ2tF5XiRM&imgurl=http://www.collectorsweekly.com/articles/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/ArchiesCropped.jpeg&w=576&h=510&ei=Pr5SUPPTM6KNigKIzoCgBw&zoom=1&iact=hc&vpx=120&vpy=283&dur=403&hovh=211&hovw=239&tx=100&ty=169&sig=113066672481944259300&page=3&tbnh=141&tbnw=158&start=53&ndsp=28&ved=1t:429,r:0,s:53,i:246