For reasons I have yet to understand, people react very strongly when parents take precautions to protect their food allergic children.
Last year, there was an incident in PA where a child had a granola bar waved in his face. That child has a severe peanut allergy — even airborne peanut dust is potentially harmful. As I read the story, the comments made my blood boil. Ignorant and misinformed people blaming parents for “creating” and “overreacting” to allergies. (You can read my rant here.)
I bring this up because of the recent tragic events in Virginia. A 7-year-old girl, Ammaria Johnson, died after a classmate gave her a peanut at recess. Ammaria had a peanut allergy.
THAT is exactly why parents of kids with food allergies worry everyday.
THAT is why we request peanut-free classrooms.
THAT is why we ask that your child wash their hands before and after lunch.
THAT is why we spend more money and energy to bake treats that the whole class can eat.
THAT is why we train everyone on how to use an EpiPen.
THAT is why we ask you don’t serve certain foods at parties.
THAT is why we nervously send our kids to school everyday.
Because no matter how much planning and prepping and educating we do, it just might not be enough to keep our kids alive.
And that’s a scary thought.