"Ate all, still hungry, please send more food."
I‘ve mentioned more than once that my son is an eater. I always hear moms worry that they can’t get their child to eat and I just sit there biting my tongue. My nephew skips meals freqently and it drives my sister crazy. However, if my son is there, he’ll slide on over to his cousin’s chair and finish off his plate for him. Seriously.
Which brings me to yesterday when his daily evaluation sheet from MDO said “ate all, still hungry, please send more food” next to his lunch comments. Let me say first that I think it’s very sweet that his teacher cares about him so much. I get it. I’ve seen him look distraught at an empty plate, and even lay his head down on his little table looking quite pathetic. My mom and and mother-in-law are constantly sneaking him extra food. I got a good laugh out of the note, and explained to his teacher that I highly doubt he was actually hungry, he probably just wanted his friend’s cookies next to him.
Let me say secondly that my son is 26-months-old and weighs 36 lbs. He is tall for his age, but the kid is stout. I can assure you that I’m not starving him. I’ve spoke to his pediatrician about it multiple times and she assures me that he’s perfectly healthy and that he’s just a big kid. BUT, that I need to continue controlling his portions and keep him active.
So here’s my point…at 2-years-old he is not going to stop at four graham crackers and one cup of milk for a snack just because he’s full. I’m his moderator, that’s my job. It’s also my job to make sure that he eats a well-rounded diet. I mean, I prefer to eat chicken strips too, but I’ve learned that chicken breast is better for me. I’ve developed a taste for broccoli. I get that he doesn’t like it right now, but it’s my job to continue presenting him with different fruits and veggies. I read once that you should present a food to a baby/toddler 10 times before you can actually say that he/she doesn’t like it. Even then, you should try to prepare it differently.
It makes me so sad to see some of these kids that look uncomfortably heavy for their age. They’re drinking soda and eating crap that I wouldn’t dream of letting my child have. Don’t get me wrong, I let him have treats, but it’s not everyday and they’re reduced to an appropriate portion size for him. My hope is that as he gets older, he will develop into a healthy person that makes healthy choices without feeling like he’s depriving himself. I want him to reach for an apple and cheese stick instead of a bag of cheese Doritos.
But for now, that’ s my job.