A wise Pediatrician once told me that as soon as my adorable toddler was approximately 10 years old, she would turn into an independent being who neither sought nor accepted my advice on a regular basis. Naturally my child had her own unique time frame. At the tender age of four she announced I was ruining her life. She had an uncanny knack of catching snippets of her older sister’s movies and using the words in context. In this case I had told her that her favorite t-shirt wasn’t available. Another time she simply refused to get dressed in order to go to a lovely preschool. I placed her firmly in her car seat and took her in pajamas. To say that she screamed her protests in no uncertain manner would be an understatement. Her wonderful teacher met us at the door and smiled calmly. I had to drive straight on for a coffee to calm my traumatized ear drums!
She would question why vegetables were necessary and insist that tomato ketchup was perfectly fine. At one point in her early years, it really was the closest thing to a vegetable she was prepared to consume. I purchased several books written by Moms specifically for picky eaters and she was almost psychic in her ability to identify purified vegetables! Then one miraculous day she came home from preschool and announced that vegetables were important in order to stay healthy. She had tried and enjoyed tomato soup for the very first time.
With this breakthrough, I again planned a selection of meals with a variety of food groups and began to make minute but positive progress. Even in this, she proved a challenge. She realized how important healthy eating was to me and decided to get creative. On the day in question she announced that she had eaten five carrots at preschool! Bearing in mind she would never touch a carrot at home, I was a little suspicious. However I played along and congratulated her on her progress:” I should really call your teacher and find out how she prepared them”. She looked horrified and sheepishly admitted that she hadn’t really eaten five.
The years have been flying by and my spirited daughter is now 11. The other night she was planning out a project for school but ignored my suggestion that she might want to do a rough draft before working on the poster. After several errors which fortunately could be erased, she looked up at me and said “Mom, I am beginning to realize I should really listen to you”. …