Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Step right up ...

And see the Amazing Hoover Child! He eats, he gobbles, he snarfs it all! Just try waving a morsel in front of his li'l face and see how quickly it disappears! Truly an amazing sight! Come one, come all -- he's always hungry!
Or maybe that's just what it *seems* like, watching people shove food at my kid.
Granted, he eats. Pretty well in fact. I get that this instant ease with solids is maybe a little unusual. Not to mention many of those foods are veggies. But still, I'm beginning to get the vibe that people see his eating as some sort of parlour trick. And that they're giving him food -- occasionally behind my back -- because it's fun, not because he actually needs to eat.
For that matter, why the instant obsession with dumping junk food down his throat? "Can he have cookies? Cake? Juice? Fig Newtons? Whipped cream? Ice cream? Juice? Weird little plastic-looking fruit gel things?" (Okay, I have no idea what those things are really called. But apparently they come with kids meals.) Why, is there some sort of hurry? Do they think he'll be deprived of childhood forever if he doesn't experience his first sundae before he can walk?
I swear I am not a killjoy. I like junk food as much as the next human. I have some fond childhood memories involving it -- trick-or-treating (always hoping for the peanut butter cups), birthday cake, Hanukkah gelt. Sinfully forbidden bits of Easter candy. Cupcakes. We had ice cream the night we got engaged and an ice cream cake at the wedding. Sweet tooth? Oh yeah.
But that's just it -- teeth. As in, my kid's only got six of them. Shouldn't we wait a little longer before letting him rot them out?
For that matter, shouldn't we sit back and enjoy him eating his spinach while we still can, before he discovers French fries?
Of course food is never just about food. There are always underlying emotions and issues. The loved ones looking to stuff his face are trying to show their love, and I appreciate that. But that's what I'm trying to do, too -- by always keeping in mind his family heritage of diabetes and weight trouble. And yet I feel like I'm the one who looks bad here. 
Well, at least no one's tried to slip him a beer yet.
That I know of.

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