Monday, April 29, 2013

Give Peas a Chance

I'm going to start this post with a confession. My son does not eat vegetables. Not green beans, not carrots, not even corn. The only veggie that he will even entertain the possibility of eating is lettuce, and even then, it's a HUGE ordeal to get him to put it in his mouth, chew, and swallow.

I've tried the whole "present them with the food at least 10 times and then they will get around to trying it". When we have veggies at dinner, there is always some on Connor's plate.  He used to balk at their mere presence, but we're going on the 328th presentation of green beans and it still took 45 minutes of prompting to get him to even agree to put a green bean into his mouth, only to have him spit it right back out.

Now, I know kids go through phases, so I've thought that maybe this would be one that he would grow out of. Our pediatrician is not concerned as his growth and all other vital statistics are right on target. He does have vitamins daily and really loves fruit, so honestly I shouldn't be worried that he's lacking in the nutrition department.  

But there's just something in my mommy brain that says that I need to get him to eat vegetables.  And I am willing to bet that part of my brain is located right next to the part that decided to clean out the bottom of the dryer with a duster without unplugging said dryer. 

I decided that I would fill the refrigerator up with vegetables and give Connor the chance to choose what vegetables we would have with dinner. I thought that giving him control over that would help make dinner time run a little smoother.  Pretty sure the electric shock from the dryer had a longer-lasting effect on my brain because smooth is the last word that I'd use to describe the subsequent dinners.

One evening, Connor had chosen peas to go with our meal.  I thought we might have success as this was not a vegetable we've presented him with very often in the past. Maybe the newness of it would make it more appealing. Before I had even set his plate down on the table, that boy had his nose plugged. Yeah. This was not going to go well.  

Since we had discussed the fact that he needed to try the vegetables he picked out, he knew he was not going to leave the table without trying the peas.  I told him that I only required him to eat three peas. He offered to eat just one and as soon as I heard myself stand my ground at my triple pea deal, I wanted to hit me. I'd done it now. Again. Drew a line in the sand for no other reason than to draw a line in the sand.  This is probably the biggest source of conflict between my son and I. The battle of wills. The quest to see who is the most stubborn. Sure I had my reasons for him trying three peas (you can't really tell what they taste like when you only have one; they're so small, two more shouldn't make a difference; even three peas isn't a mouthful).  But, honestly, would it have been so terrible if I had let him just try one?  

After much back and forth with the three peas/one pea/just put something green in your mouth so we can get on with our lives, Connor finally put the peas in his mouth and then spit them right back out.  If I'd have gone with his number, that would have been two less peas I had to track down when he jettisoned them out of his mouth with his tongue (still plugging his nose, mind you).  I counted that as "trying", told him that he could be done with his peas for this evening, and said that he should eat the other food on his plate. Little did I know (and I, of all people, really should have known), the peas had touched the steak, rendering the meat completely inedible. 

If you're looking for me at dinner time, I'm the one dusting the dryer.
The vile peas.

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