Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Lessons about food from my toddler

Yesterday I couldn't get my little one to eat. I tried everything, but he just wanted his sippy cup. I was happy to see him staying hydrated, but was concerned that he wouldn't eat more than a few bites of anything.

Cormac has been sick lately, but the last two days had been on the mend. So his lack of appetite was concerning for me. Tack on the fact that he is P.I.C.K.Y. when it comes to food (I don't know where he gets it; I was always such a good eater. . . sorry Mom for putting you through that) and you get one stressed out mom. I was sure I was starving him to death.

He wasn't the only one without an appetite yesterday. I didn't want to eat anything. Food just seemed unappetizing and yucky. But I was sick. I knew what was wrong with me. And if I decided not to eat than it way my own business. Besides, how was I expected to eat when I was sure my ear drum was going to burst if it hadn't already. I was so sure that it was okay for me not to eat. I knew what I was doing. I am learning to become an intuitive eater and if my body didn't want food than it was just fine.

But Cormac needed to eat.

Because I'm an adult.

And I knew better.

Last night after putting Cormac to bed I was sure he would wake up in the middle of the night starving. I was sure I should have tried harder to get him to eat something. Anything.

This morning when I woke up I was hungry. My appetite had returned. My body is still not healed, but whatever was going on yesterday had eased and it was time to fuel my body.

And Cormac? He slept great last night. And he woke up hungry too. He ate a good breakfast. Not as much as I though he would, but then I think his recent growth spurt has slowed as well.

As I was thinking about food and bodies this morning I realized how silly I had been trying to force Cormac to eat. There is a lot about intuitive eating that I am still getting used to. And there is a lot that I can learn from him. We are born intuitive eaters. We are in touch with our bodies right from the start. It's over time that we learn how to stop listening.

So while being a mom is hard, and I will probably always stress when he is not eating as well as I think he should, I am going to try to ease up and allow my son to always stay in touch with his own body. If he feels he has had enough then who am I to tell him otherwise? And maybe I can get just as in touch with my own body someday.


Sarah said...

love, love, love this!

Thelma said...

One summer all Ammon subsisted on was watermelon and cinnamon toast. It was all he would eat. Look how big he got.

This is a great post. Kids are a lot more in touch with their bodies. Why do we forget?