Let Them Eat!
May 16, 2015
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I am a pathetically hopeless foodie with a level of euphoria washing over me from eating foods bordering on something that should be developed as its own, separate mental health disorder category. At one-year-old my son possesses the foundation of the same characteristics. While I cannot say if his experience is an out-of-body one, he certainly experiences great pleasure from any tasty morsel crossing his pallet throughout the day.
Prior to my food enthusiast’s birth, my husband and I ate in front of the television, hunched over whatever appropriate dishware for the dinner I prepared. Eating at the table was reserved for burrito night, or any other meal that was certain to feed our floor in such a manner that its signature would be immortalized on our Home Depot rug.
Common wisdom pushes for formal family dinners; I know this. I spent months ruminating on this simple structure as though the Nobel Award Committee has a specific reverence for this category above all else. The beginning months of my child’s life were spent pondering the specifics of family dinner, but like most things during this first year, the actualization proved more natural than expected.
My son rarely ate baby food; I opted for feeding him whatever I was eating. Certainly there were no complaints from the immediate family peanut gallery (The extended one is another matter, but those are stories for another time…). In the beginning, our meals continued on the sofa; the ushering of food almost never occurred in the highchair.
But, the day arrived when the bottle would be replaced by the sippy cup, marking the end of Little Man’s main feedings on my lap while I watched bad reality television that made me feel better about my genetic contributions to this planet. Now he requires meals so substantial that I feel confident this two foot person’s portion would satisfy a linebacker on a low achieving team.
Now our previously ignored table finds its Renaissance as the three of us sit around it every evening. Not only does my son heartily eat whatever we shovel in his mouth, but now he eagerly jams fistfuls of delicacies in his own mouth as we eat beside him (These days he even manages to deprive his lap of its accustomed meal.). I hope I always remember his wide, beaming smile displaying every tooth during his full mouth giggles in between new bites and sips of his drink. It won’t always be like this, but for now I can pretend.