It's a rare occurrence to see those gummy little fruit snacks in my pantry. All I can see are the judgey Jane eyes of nutrionists and dentists everywhere when I pass them in the snack aisle. I then imagine my college aged kids buying them by the case load to keep stashed in their dorm rooms because "mom never let us have these", so I pick up a package like 4 times a year. This same logic does not apply to pizza and ice cream apparently which I am happy to purchase with zero guilt, go figure.
I bought Lucy some My Little Pony fruit snacks and thought since it's such an exciting treat, I would throw one in Jack's bag for his snack time at school. I wondered if the My Little Ponyness was a little young so I took them out of the bright pink packaging and put them in a small container.
"Mom, I don't want to take these to school." he said.
"Why? I thought you LOVED fruit snacks!" I replied.
"My friends will make fun of me, it's okay, thanks anyway mom." he said looking a little resigned.
"Oh dear, this is a problem. But what if you like them, I say blow off your friends." said with my most brave voice. "Let's ask Josiah if he has any advice, he's been in kindergarten before."
We tell Josiah the problem and he returns with a very flat and matter of fact, "Just tell them, Stop making fun of me, I like my fruit snacks."
Jack replies, "I'll just eat them now, how about that?", the advice offered being rendered completely useless.
"I think I know how you feel Jackie, I don't want anyone to make fun of me either. I used to be so worried about it when I was a kid. I still get worried about it sometimes. I think it kept me from trying some things I wanted to do but I had to learn a little bit at a time. You'll figure it out, it's okay."
Ummm, I'm still figuring it out. I promptly called my sister to analyze this parenting pitfall and obsess over my own childhood. She, much like Josiah, made it simple.
Go light with with him. Make your house and family the safe place. Tell him: "No problem buddy, We'll keep the My Little Pony fruit snack love on the down low. How about you have them when you get home?"
Problem solved. How is it that we even attempt to parent without the village?
I ask you supersister readers, what would you have done? or what do you do when the potential of projecting your past onto your kid creeps up? Let us know, oh wise ones, in the comments.