can't win for losing

My oldest daughter, Maddi, is in middle school.  She attends a Health class every other day, opposite PE.  Mads didn't talk so much about her health class in the first half of the year, and come to find out the subject matter was all about body changes, being a tween and how to practice good hygiene habits.  If I even bring up the subject of deodorant Maddi spins on her heals and practically runs the other direction.  In other words, she does not want to grow up and have to think about these things.

This may come as a surprise to some of you, but I was the EXACT opposite as a child.  I know ....... shocking.  I couldn't wait to have a daily routine of bathing with scented soap, shaving my legs, primping and having to put on deodorant. Not that I was a girly-girl; just one who was anxious to move on to the next stage of  ::ahem, cough cough::  development.

Which is why I have a tough time when Maddi doesn't want to talk about personal hygeine or make-up or smelly lotions.  Being the adult and mother, however, means I need to let go of my needs to 'share a moment' and move on to figuring out how to meet Maddi's needs.


Sorry, back to Heath class.  

So, lately Maddi has been openly and freely talking about what they are learning in Health.  Not because she has decided growing up is okay, but because the subject matter has changed to nutrition.  WooHoo!  Food!  The universal language in our household.

Maddi is excited to be learning about the food pyramid and all about the many different food options and healthy decisions to make.  She is recognizing the 'real' foods we have been eating at home and understanding why we need to limit processed foods, sugary cereals and trips to fast food joints.

 click here for bigger version

I really like what the modern day version is all about, even if our government was the one to design it ;)

So, Maddi has been taking her lunch to school and her friends have started to notice what foods she brings and now crowd around her to see what is 'in the bag' for the day.  Maddi is willing to try about anything, so her palette is well developed.  She is willing to pack anything from a PB & J (whole grain bread, natural peanut butter and blackberry preserves) to red bell pepper slices to fresh fruit (including mango and berries) to homemade bread.  Her friends are often willing to try something 'new to them' when in the presence of their peers than at home under the watchful eye of a parent. I love that Mads is willing to be a little bit different and inclined to bring some not-so-popular healthy lunches to school.

Until last week, that is.  Maddi came home to tell me about how a group of Nutritionists were going to be visiting their Health classes, talking about the benefits of healthy food choices.  These 'health scouts' were also going to be walking around the lunch room searching for students who brought a healthy, well-balance lunch.  When they found such a student, the Nutritionists were going to snap a photo of the child and their lunch, then post the pic up on a wall-mounted display for all to view.

Uh, oh.

My daughter Maddi is NOT one who likes attention drawn to herself.  So not like me.  

Maddi was concerned her lunches would stand out and attract the cameras to her face and food.  Mads suggested maybe we pack some junk food along with the healthy food so she could set out bags of chips and soda and candy on the table in front of her, thus thwarting attention of the healthy food police.  She said she could hold her REAL lunch in her lap and sneak bites of fresh strawberries and carrot sticks when no one was watching.

Oh my.  Look what I have done to my child.  She now wants to hide her previously popular lunch just to avoid the paparazzi. 

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