Shannon Miskimen is a busy woman. A full-time accountant and a single mom of two, she somehow finds time to pay tons of extra attention to her kids' food and meals--and that's because it can be a matter of life and death. Her son Cayden, who is in kindergarten, has multiple severe food allergies due to a rare disorder called Food Protein Induced Enterocolitis Syndrome, or FPIES for short.
"Currently he has 12 known food allergies and can be allergic to any food he’s never had before," write the mom in a revealing essay published on The Mighty. "No test exists to see what he’s allergic to, other than feeding him something new and seeing if he gets sick."
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Sound like a difficult situation for a 5-year-old? It is--and it's no walk in the park for his mom, either.
"He’s no stranger to being excluded from these parties and from nearly every food-based activity at school," Miskimen wrote. Meanwhile, "I’ve become accustomed to sending every single meal, snack and dessert for him to school. He has a lunchbox half the size of his backpack for this very reason. And every time there’s a party or birthday, I send a treat box so he can have something special while the other kids eat the store-bought cupcakes and candy bars and pizzas that always seem to accompany these events."
That's why, when she got an e-mail about the issue from her son's teacher, she was shocked--and then she immediately began to cry.
"I wanted a party for Cayden where everything is Cayden-friendly," the teacher wrote. "I would like for a day where Cayden won’t have to worry about what other people have and where he can have everything. If you see something that would not work please let me know!" the note continued, before listing off the specific foods and brands she planned to get.
Even more surprising? It wasn't the only note his thoughtful teacher had sent home.
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"His teacher and her aide also sent notes home with the other students saying all food would be provided for the party, due to food allergies in the classroom," wrote Miskimen. "The party was a complete success. Cayden was able to eat everything without fear, and this mom was crying happy tears at the generosity and care of my son’s teacher."
Talk about a happy surprise for a hardworking mom: An eating-related event for her son where she could finally relax, and her son could nosh to his heart's content. Our hearts are warm!
via The Mighty
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