Why? Because she has successfully worn me down. Meal times have become such a battle lately, and this morning, I just didn't have the energy to fight. (Maybe because my precious boy was up at 4:07 this morning? Could be.)
I feel like I've tried everything. As a baby, Allie was a wonderful eater. Her favorite foods were zucchini, strawberries, and carrots. As a very picky eater myself, this thrilled me. I just knew she wouldn't struggle with the same picky eating habits I have. I was wrong - at least for now. That's what I keep telling myself: She'll outgrow this; It's just a phase; She's only 2. Oh, I hope.
My once-wonderful eater now only approves of the following foods:
- Hot Dogs (We give her "turkey dogs", at least.)
- Chicken Strips
- Grilled Chicken (Occasionally)
- Strawberries (These are slowly becoming more difficult to get her to eat.)
- Peaches (Only if Daddy is eating them, too.)
- Applesauce (But don't presume that means she'll eat apples.)
- Scrambled Eggs
- Hershey's Kisses
- Dehydrated fruit
- and of course, the childhood staple, Goldfish.
Didn't see any vegetables in there? That's because there aren't any. Not a single one. And we've tried. We've made them into silly faces on her plate. We've offered for her to put Ketchup on them. We've tried to bribe her to eat "just two more bites" and then she can have dessert. We've battled it out at the table for up to an hour as she sat crying, arms crossed, tears flowing, refusing to take a bite.
She. Is. STUBBORN.
It's so exhausting, but we don't want to give in to her daily demands for her favorites.
I am learning a lot through this process, though. When these meal-time battles first began, I saw them as a battle of wills. I was right, she was wrong, and she just needed to obey and move on. (And yes, as a parent, sometimes that's the case.) I'm learning, though, that that demanding, staunch style of parenting may not be what works best for my girl. She is already such a girl. She needs to talk through things. To understand the "why"behind the rules. Yes, at times, that means she does her best to reason her way out of things, too. I'm learning that most times, it is good to wait it out. To bend and break that stubbornness I see in her, and just wait on her obedience. I'm also learning that me being "right" or "winning" isn't the end-all. And that sometimes, it's okay to give her some grace, and not force her to eat that last bite of green beans. It's a balance. A rhythm.
That said...HELP! Does anyone have any suggestions or words of wisdom on the subject? I'd love to hear them!