My kid LOVES food
My youngest son is nearly 2.5 years old and weighs in at a healthy (ahem) 2st 6lbs. He’s not fat and everyone assures me - after they have processed that this mini rugby player that stands before them is only 2 years old - that he is tall for his age. The thing is, the main reason that my son weighs the same as 113 bananas, is simply because my kid LOVES food!
Living with him is like having a dog. Any time my husband or I try to have a meal, ‘The Machine’, as we now fondly refer to him, is straight over sniffing around us for a bite. Even if he’s just scoffed his own 3-course-breakfast, he’s right in there looking for a taste of what we have.
Something happened yesterday that has really touched a nerve and I’m not entirely sure why it’s got to me so much. I see myself as quite an understanding and reasonable individual, but this has left me feeling quite irritated. One of The Machine’s playschool teachers wrote in his daily diary that maybe I should give him more food in his snack-box as he ‘polishes it off very quickly’ and is ‘always looking for more’. There’s a couple of reasons that this has peeved me off. Firstly, I’m slightly offended that they are insinuating that I don’t give my child enough to eat – have they seen him? And secondly, as a mother I’m a teeny bit miffed that someone is trying to tell me what’s best for my child. Even though I trust these people to look after my pride and joy, it sucks when someone else suggests what’s best for your child. I’ve completely fallen in to defence-mode and this diary comment from an extremely lovely and kind teacher has somehow offended me. But what does that say about me?
If my GP had given me medical advice regarding my child, I would listen and take on-board whatever advice they gave. If my oldest son’s school teacher said he was having difficulty learning to read, I would listen and apply whatever they recommended to help him progress. If the salesperson in the shoe shop told me to buy the bigger size for my child, I would listen and buy the bigger size as they probably know their stuff. So why is it when my child’s care-giver recommends giving my child a little more food in his snack-box that my back stiffens?
I’ve given it A LOT of thought and I’ve come up with a theory, hear me out! As women, we are designed to reproduce and give life. Our bodies are designed to give birth to a baby and from the first minute of their life, we hopefully have the ability to feed that baby from our breasts. I believe this need and desire to feed our children stays with us until the day we die. How many times as an adult have you visited your parents and one of the first things your mum still says to you is, ‘are you hungry - can I make you something?’. We want to do right by our children and this starts with the very basics of feeding them. If someone comes along and implies that we may not be doing it properly, no matter how old the child is, it hits us where it hurts, right in the maternal core of our being.
With that in mind, my back has returned to its normal, relaxed self and I’ve stopped re-reading the comment in my child’s diary and taken it as the innocent, helpful suggestion in which it was meant. I have however also decided that if anything about feeding The Machine ever becomes a topic for comment again, my calm response will simply be that, my kid LOVES food.