Note: This is the latest in a series of posts about The Kid’s Celiac disease diagnosis. They will all be collected under the Gluten Schmuten category tag.
“So guess what (The Kid) had for breakfast this morning?”
It was my first night home from Washington, D.C. Combine a 1:30 a.m. airplane landing with five hours of sleep and a late departure from work, and I was a little slower than normal.
I mumbled something that sounded like “What?” as I emptied the Wegmans shopping bag of takeaway sushi that I procured for dinner.
“Cookies,” said The Wife, in her sarcastic excited voice. I stopped, looked at her and saw her smiling, in that way she does before she goes to one of my family events, a function for her job, or any other time she’s pretending to be a “good little soldier.”
My look of utter confusion led to a quick story. Muffins were for breakfast. They didn’t have any gluten-free muffins for The Kid. Cookies were the closest thing the cook (A term used loosely here. He’s more of a food defroster and preparer.) had on hand. Thus, cookies for breakfast.
The Wife said that The Kid was all sorts of fired up, that the other kids were pissed that they didn’t get cookies, and that there would be a discussion later with the cook.
We decided not to tell The Kid’s day care center right off the bat. Frankly, we just did not have a lot of answers that we could supply them about foods and the like. We made the decision to wait until after our semi-fruitless meeting with the nutritionist.
The Wife was dreading this meeting because, well, our daycare has been less than cooperative over time. From the best I can tell, our day care center is not required to do much of anything. New York State’s Office of Child and Family Services regulates day care centers through its Division of Child Care Services. Here’s what it says in 418-1.12(c) of the code:
Where meals are furnished by the child day care center, food preferences for personal, religious or medical reasons may be accommodated. If resultant meal patterns or serving sizes will not meet the child’s nutritional needs, a medical statement must be obtained documenting the appropriateness of the variation.
That’s all. It gets better when she enters Pre-K, but for now the Empire State leaves us, and day care providers, with a lot of room for interpretation.
Luckily, for once, our daycare seemed proactive. The meeting between the center director and The Wife went relatively well. It turns out that this was the first Celiac diagnosis for the center, but that plenty of kids there had a lactose intolerance or allergy so they were used to dealing with those needs. The Wife offered to bring food, which is generally a no-no for our daycare. The director wanted to discuss things with the person who orders food for all of their locations and get back to us.
It started a little rough. On one day, they had toast for breakfast. The Kid got a corn tortilla. Lunch was grilled cheese. The Kid was served a corn tortilla. Snack was…I forgot what was for snack, but take a shot at what The Kid got. Yep, a corn tortilla.
The Wife asked the teacher in The Kid’s room whether this was because they had not gone shopping or received the supply of gluten-free food, or if The Kid would be served corn tortillas in perpetuity. The teacher hoped it was the former. We were not convinced, but gave it a few days.
Things have indeed changed. They have been good about the diagnosis, making sure more nutritious gluten-free option available, with the exception of cookies for breakfast last week. There is almost a rush to tell us when they a type of crackers or other product in. Like everything else with this place, I think the proof will be with the long term results.