Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Pancakes and wondering how you would feel?

Seeing as how today is Mardi Gras....and pancake Tuesday for many people...including Emma's school, I thought I would share our experiences with it. I think I must have been deprived or left in the dark, because I have no memories at all of growing up with a pancake day or any sort of Mardi Gras celebration at school. Anyway, I think I have lucked out because Emma is actually not a big fan of pancakes...so she didn't want to partake in any at school this morning. Bing Bang Boom...no worries about guessing carb counts or having her bolus for it...nothing! She isn't really an extremely picky child when it comes to food...but there are definitely some things that she flat out refuses to eat...pancakes are one of them.
Well, when I picked Emma up at lunch time to bring her home to eat like usual...she shared a little story with me about their pancake time. As we walked along our usual path, she began by saying how boooored she was sitting there watching everyone eat...waiting for them to be finished...just sitting there talking with some friends. She said that a very nice woman came around to the table to ask her if she wanted any pancakes. At this point Emma goes into her best southern accent (apparently the woman was from the deep south based on Emma's recount...lol) and tells me that they woman said, "Would ya like some pancakes hun?" Emma told her no thank you and the woman went on about the rest of the table. A little while later she came back up to Emma and said, "Aww are ya SURE hun? Can't I get ya some pancakes?" and Emma said no thank you once again. Well, I guess this woman felt like Emma was just being polite or something and pushed it once again. Emma then told her that no she did not want any pancakes because she's diabetic and she can't. Hmmmmm....hearing her retell this part of the story was kind of like a punch to the gut for me. I have always made it clear to Emma that food is never the issue...she can eat absolutely anything she wants to eat...because that is what our doctor and our diabetes team has told us from the beginning. (I know other places do not handle things this way...but ours does) So, based on that...it kind of threw me off to hear those words come from her mouth. I have made it one of my top priorities to make her see that diabetes can not and will not hold her back or prevent her from participating in things and enjoying the exact same things as her friends. I think it's important.
I think Emma must have sensed my surprise at her statement to this woman because she looked up at me with an annoyed look in her eyes and said, "I KNOW MOMMY, I KNOW I can eat anything I want....I just didn't want to have to explain it to this lady...she kept bugging me and asking me and I just wanted her to stop...so that was the only way I could do it."
I'm not sure how I feel about this. On the one hand I am proud of her for standing up for herself in her own round about way. On the other hand I am not so happy that she took the easy way out and used her diabetes as an excuse...and in turn further perpetuated the ignorance that is out there in the world about type 1 diabetes. On the other hand (wait...I don't have three hands , do i?! Oh well...stay with me on this one) I feel bad for not being happy with the option she took to get this lady to stop asking...I mean she is JUST a kid...she shouldn't have to sit there and explain and educate adults about her diabetes.
So, I am left feeling a little torn...a little confuzzled about it all. Curious as to how you all would feel about a scenario like this too?


  1. I hear Ally saying things like that too. And I always make a point to remind her that she CAN have it, that we are choosing not to. I remind her about taking an opportunity like that to educate...but I also remember that she is just 8 and that she has a lifetime for educating.

  2. Sometimes I think it's easier for them to say they can't instead of trying to make whoever understand that they can, they just are choosing not to. Don't like that choice, but it's not always mine to make.
    I appreciate where that southern gal was coming from (HILARIOUS that Emma used an accent for her!), but seriously, if the kid says 'no thank you' then move along!!!

  3. Yeah...just 8. I think it is a lot for them to "educate" people all of the time. I remember not wanting to over-explain things when I was little. This was most likely the easy way out for Emma in dealing with this lady. And...maybe let Emma know that next time it is totally acceptable to say "no thanks, I don't care for pancakes"...so that "D" doesn't get a bad rap. xo