Of course I was not at Grandma’s house all of the time. At home, there were different food rules. For instance, we did not have sugar coated cereal in the house. I recall wanting Honeycomb cereal so badly because it had Winnie the Pooh character pencil toppers in each box. I begged and pleaded and my parents did finally buy me a box. At Halloween, my candy was rationed and I was allowed only a reasonable number of pieces per day. I also don’t recall many desserts in the house. As you can imagine, although no one meant for this to happen, it set up some mixed messages about food.
Another odd twist to my story is my experience in nursery school (what they used to call preschool). I remember that on more than one occasion, the school served mayonnaise sandwiches (mayonnaise on white bread) and egg salad sandwiches. I did not particularly like the taste of either and at some point I became so nauseous that I vomited. I was threatened with the prospect of eating another sandwich (I do not really recall whether or not I actually had to eat it). The upside of this is that I cannot stand the sight, smell, or taste of mayonnaise and egg salad. Given how unhealthy mayonnaise is, this is not bad at all. However, there is a message that, whether you like a food or not, you should eat it if it is placed in front of you.
I started first grade at age 5 after testing out of kindergarten. With a late December birthday, this meant that I was considerably younger than my classmates. In addition, at age 4, I started wearing glasses due to farsightedness. The combination of corrected vision and immaturity made my participation in gym, school yard games, and other physical activities a challenge. Physical coordination was a challenge and since my glasses were made to enhance close vision, I can only imagine that they interfered with my distance vision impairing my eye-hand coordination. I am certain that this is the time when I first concluded that I was NOT athletic. But how could that be?