The past week or so has been busy, and I've been...well, tired. I haven't had the energy to do much writing lately. Part of the reason was that my son has been on a I-refuse-to-eat-dinner phase. It's been great. Not really. At one point, we visited with the Feeding Clinic, to discuss different approaches for getting him to be willing to eat dinner.
After some time contemplating my son's decision to avoid dinner, I came to 3 conclusion:
1. He definitely has issues with food presentation - somehow if his food doesn't look how he thinks it should look, he refuses to eat it. Case in point - last night we went to a pizza, sub, and salad place for dinner. We go there at least once a month, and The Toddler always eats a slice of cheese pizza. I ordered the same slice of cheese pizza that he always gets, but last night, he took one look at the pizza, and said, "I don't like that." Yeah, right. Whatever. There was nothing wrong with it, but apparently in his mind there was.
2. He is still a picky eater. He's always been a picky eater. Since birth. Unfortunately.
3. He is definitely going through an autonomous phase. I've noticed a rise in his desire to do things himself, and make his own decisions.
I was pretty confident that the autonomy issue was the most influential part of his decision to skip dinner on a regular basis. Apparently I needed to come up with a couple of inconsequential areas where The Toddler could express his autonomy. So I decided to let him pick his clothes when he gets dressed. Within reason though. Sometimes we give him a couple of options, if we are going somewhere where he needs to dress appropriately - like Sundays. On Sundays we let him choose which dress clothes to wear. So he doesn't look completely like a wild child. :)
You know what though? It worked. After a couple of days, we started to notice a difference in The Toddler's attitude towards eating. He even took a couple of bites of meat! Amazing.
One thing that has really surprised me about parenting is the need for creativity when working with your kids through their issues. I've found that often times the normal approaches to overcoming conflict rarely work with my son. So I've had to get creative - like allowing him to pick out his clothes.
Just a thought for today. :) More creative posts coming soon.