I considered myself to be a pretty healthy eater until this past Tuesday when I attended a lecture called “Special Diets for Special Children.” As if traveling and eating healthy wasn’t hard enough, now I’m faced with traveling and supporting a special diet for my kids. Talk about pre-planning.
Let me just say that as I listened to this seasoned nutritionist talk about all the junk that we put into our bodies, a lot of which we THINK is good for us, and all the stuff that I serve my kids that may be inhibiting them from functioning at their best, I wanted to cry. I literally had to take a few conscious breaths to keep from losing my composure in a room full of strangers. I’m sure they would have all understood since most of them had been at that starting place where I was, but I don’t normally cry in front of people. I’m just not a pretty cryer. But I digress…
Last year, when I changed my diet and nutrition habits, I shed 50 pounds. My healthy lifestyle became my family’s new lifestyle. It made traveling more of a challenge because I wasn’t willing to stop at just any fast food restaurant when we went on road trips. I pressured my husband to time our stops where we could sit down to eat as it ensured my kids would get some vegetables and have non-fried options. My packing lists became more extensive; it took me longer to grab snacks for the road; I invested in special food bags; and in general, eating became more of a focal point.
Now I am switching my boys to a GFCF diet and it is stressing me out. Figuring out what to feed them at home is enough of a challenge but to think about traveling and feeding them accordingly makes me want to cancel all vacation plans and burn my AAA card. What!? The restrictions are unbelievable but necessary, and unfortunately families that have children on special diets do not have many appropriate fast-food options when they travel. At least, I can’t think of any just yet as this is all new to me.
I guess when we hit the road or the skies, that’s when we will really see what preparation and planning is all about. The traveling with kids playing field has officially changed.