When bad sugar happens to good kidsDecember 17, 2010
As I walked across the playground to pick my son up from his afterschool program today, the Spidey mom sensed that something was awry. In the distance, I could see him bouncing around like a pinball, flailing around without his jacket on in the middle of December. As I got closer, he disappeared into his classroom as the program supervisor spotted me and welcomed me in.
Just a few minutes later, he resurfaced with a layer of brown muck across his face, dirt across his cheek, holding a plate of what appeared to be about 1,000 calories of crap – graham crackers caked in sugar frosting and doused with sprinkles, studded with gum drops. “Look what I got mommy!” he proclaimed with excitement. Of course he was thrilled. Because the mommy ogre never gives him processed sugar like that. Sure, the occasional cookie or piece of cake. But it’s within reason. And it’s ok because it’s me.
So now, I get to look like the wicked witch of the OC and take that plate away from him. Because he sure as hell is not taking it home with us.
At first, I felt a little betrayed. My son knows better, I thought. With a mom who’s company is called Eat Cleaner, you better believe they were weaned on fresh fruit and veggies at a very young age. But just like anything, when temptation stares you in the face at 5, and an adult is the one giving it to you, he thought he’d won the jackpot and tried to inhale enough of the cookie catastrophe he could. But when I looked into my little guy’s face and saw the effects of the sugar indulgence, quite literally, all over his face, I felt that everything I’ve tried to teach him went out the window.
I believe that developing good eating habits for our children is one of the requirements of being a parent. If we just let them choose what they want, it would be a freaking fast food free-for-all. Sugar, salt and fat just cling to our DNA like nasty hitchikers and indulging that taste is like hitting the crank.
So, my little junkie buddy came down off his high and proceeded to cry his eyes out for no coherent reason.
It made me very sad to experience this today. I’m not sure what to do. What do you think?