My little man at twenty months is becoming independent. My husband and I have been talking about my son’s emerging preference to sit in a regular chair, foregoing his high chair. Naturally, we are reluctant to do so. But, today as I’m holding my son and preparing to feed him his lunch of chicken, orange, and milk (all elements he chose, by the way), he once again refused to sit in the high chair, and no amount of touting how special his chair was would change his mind. At first I assumed that he wanted to dine on my lap once again. After the last several meals conducted in such a fashion I stated that he was well enough to eat on his own. His response was a determined pointer finger at my chair. I inquired if he wanted to sit on the chair by himself and eat, and after he confirmed such a desire with his assertion of, “Dah,” I figure, why not?
This was not an easy decision, but it was unavoidable. I could either suffer through a tantrum with a sleeping husband upstairs or suck it up and embrace cleaning the contents of his mean off the floor within seconds of Little Man’s upgraded dining experience. And, just to make sure to nurture this likely catastrophe, I kept his chicken on one of our regular plates. I know it’s Corelle, and therefore pretty hearty, but what are the chances of the dishware surviving in my son’s hands after a minute into his meal…tops?
But, as he was sitting so nicely on my chair, barely seeing over the top of the table, it was too late to switch to one of his smaller, plastic plates. I placed his meal before him, realizing that he still needed his milk, orange, and fork. As my content Big Man began eating appropriately, I took a deep breath and quietly rushed to the fridge to retrieve one remaining article at a time.
I never became fully confident that my son wouldn’t toss the plate, but I could see the swell of pride as I served him. He pointed to the placemat I forgot to drag in front of him, and he looked up at me and smiled in between sips from his cup once he was able to carefully replace his drink on the mat…just like Mommy and Daddy.
He didn’t want much of his orange, but he sat there quietly concentrating on his meal, using his fork as he has been in increasing frequency as of late. I sat around the corner from him not wanting a perfectly good orange to go to waste. As I began eating, Big Man looks at me and offers me his fork when he sees me dining with my hands.
His lunch didn’t last all that long, but he looked up at me when he was finished and raised his arms for me to pick him up. Well done, my love. Growing up so fast…