My Lincoln is . . . . . ummm . . . . . . . . an individual with singular tastes. I will not label him a picky eater anymore, because that label has always brought to mind a bratty and spoiled child. And while he has his difficult moments, Lincoln is generally not bratty or spoiled.
Lincoln has been a lesson in humbleness. The prideful mother I was 5 years ago knew how to handle a child who would not eat his supper. I had an arsenal of techniques (from serving the same food at the next meal, to eating a small thank-you bite, to the “no supper, no dessert” rule, etc.) that I had either read about and/or used on child #1. All it required, I was 100% certain, was a fearless and consistent mom. After all, my first son had conformed nicely, thereby bolstering my pride even further.
Then came child #2 — Lincoln. My dear second son has been a different ball of wax from Day One, but I didn’t recognize it. Looking back, I think I was blinded by an obsession to “do it right ” . . . . . . . you know this whole parenting thing. See, there is that pride again. “I” was doing it right. Ouch! It hurts to realize my own arrogance!
Now, I just hope and pray (sometimes while crying) that I get some of this parenting thing right and that God will spackle over my mistakes with a fresh coat of grace.
Last night, as I was encouraging Lincoln to eat the Rainy Day Chicken Soup, he asked very sweetly, “Mama, next time you make chicken soup, can you also make something that I like?”
That question pierced my heart. His perception it that I rarely make things he likes. I want my sweet Lincoln to know that I love him enough to make things that are good for his body AND that he likes.
So tonight at supper, Lincoln was doing his usual ——- tipping back in his chair, knees pulled up to his shoulders (how can he sit like that?) and smiling his big smile and enjoying supper time chatter. He had not touched the cooked spinach that he claims to like.
I grabbed a pen and pad and wrote across the top: Foods That Lincoln Likes. I had him tell me what he likes and I started a list. Later, Lincoln thought of more things that he likes and added them to the list himself. Here is Lincoln’s list so far.
Foods that Lincoln Likes:
*raw spinach (prefers to cooked)
My plan is to keep a running list and hope that he will feel motivated to make the list longer. I will refer to the list when making my menu plan for the week, so I can always try to have at least one thing that Lincoln likes at each meal.
Nope, I no longer think parenting is easy. It is definitely not a simple “if you do A and B, you will get C” type deal. I’ve made so many mistakes, but tonight, I pray I made a step in the right direction.