For the most part, I like the foods I’ve been talking about and I’ve had some pretty great stories to go along with them (if I do say so myself…); but today is vastly different. I do not like oatmeal; I would even go so far as to say that I hate it. I think there was a time in my life when I maybe, kind of, sort of liked it a little bit, but that didn’t last long. I also believe that if circumstances had been different, it would probably have been something I quite enjoyed as an adult.
We didn’t have much growing up. I remember my mother trying to make a very small amount of money stretch every time we went grocery shopping and I probably dislike grocery shopping because it always seemed like more stress than fun whenever we went. I remember she carried a calculator with her and we had to add up everything we put in the basket. Sometimes we did fabulously, but other times we had to put things back, trying to make what we needed fit the number we were supposed to stay under on the calculator.
As it was, we had a lot of hot cereal when I was growing up. I don’t think that would have turned me off it all on it’s own, but add to that a domineering father who made us eat what was in front of us no matter what and the fact that we had oatmeal or a variation of it almost every single day and what’s left is a deep scar that manifests itself in my hatred of oatmeal. It’s even turned into a physical description of said hatred where I gag when I smell it and sometimes just talking about it or even thinking about it.
I think this is a huge reason why I don’t force my kids to eat anything. I always ask them to try something new, but if they don’t like it, I won’t make them eat it. I don’t like waste any more than the next person, so I also tell them to only take what they will eat, but there are times that I can’t even finish what’s on my plate. How is it that I, as a parent, would treat my children any differently? The answer is, at least for me, I don’t. I try to respect my children’s likes and dislikes and I don’t force them to eat anything.
I can’t say it’s always been easy trying to find things my kids enjoy eating, but we manage. Jaxon has finally grown out of his really picky eating stage and I’m hoping Andru will follow soon. I honestly believe that children have different palates and they change eventually all on their own, but trying to force them to eat something is the opposite of a good idea and can lead to unnecessary scars when they’re older.
Oatmeal. It’s what’s not for breakfast at my house.