- I am a below knee amputee. More importantly, I am also Mommy to two boys, a very active 10 year old (Robby) and an mischievous toddler (Timmy). I have learned that being a parent with a disability can create some unusual and sometimes humorous situations. This blogger is available for hire! Let's talk and learn how a blog can expand your business.
Thursday, January 22, 2015
A few nights ago we watched the State of the Union address. Instead of the doom and gloom, the sky is falling type reports we are accustomed to hearing, this time the news was encouraging. According to the experts, the economy is rebounding. We looked at each other and knew that no words needed to be exchanged. It is ironic that the economic forecast is so positive when Scott and I were just discussing the dire straits that many of his students are experiencing.
In 21 years of teaching, Scott has never had so many students who are truly hungry. I'm not talking "I'm a teenager and can eat a lot" hungry. I'm talking about the type of hunger where they can't concentrate on their school work because of a need to eat. Too many of his students are reliant upon their free lunch voucher for their only source of nutrition. On weekends, holidays or snow days when school is closed, we've learned that many of these kids simply don't eat. It is absolutely heartbreaking!
For the first few weeks of school I was unaware of his student's hunger problem. He brought home a list of his student's birthdays at the beginning of the school year and asked if I would be willing to make cupcakes to celebrate each one. While I was happy to oblige, I was surprised by his request. He casually remarked that he doesn't think some of these kids will have anything other than our cupcakes to celebrate their birthday, and instead of selecting the few in need he thought it was best to just do it for everybody. I put the names and dates on my calendar and have not yet missed a birthday.
While I thought the cupcake request was odd, I began to suspect that the issue was more pervasive. I began to notice that our leftovers were disappearing. Knowing that Scott couldn't eat half of a lasagna for lunch, I finally asked him what he was doing with all of our food. It was then that he explained that some of his students this year are truly hungry.
I wish we could feed all of them, but I know that is impossible. Instead, we are desperately trying to put a band-aid on the situation. I have come to expect that any left over meals will be taken and distributed to his class. We buy ramen noodles by the case so that we know these kids have something to eat over the weekend and holidays. Every Thursday morning he drives by Costco to pick up their expired baked goods. It saddened me to learn of the excitement of his students when they eagerly pick up stale bread and rolls to take home to their families.
The experts are touting economic success, but I doubt that his students would agree. I look at Robby and Timmy and it breaks my heart to envision them eagerly accepting their teacher's left over meals and old bread. I am reminded of how lucky we are to not be in that situation. I know that our stopgap measures will not fix the situation, but that doesn't mean that we won't try.
at 5:04 AM