All good things must come to an end, they say. Dad and Janice headed home today. I know we’ll see them again in around nine weeks. I know how long that is, it’s not ‘forever’ or an indeterminate time away. But Cameron has no clue. Nine weeks might mean tomorrow, or next week, or just short of never. That said, he isn’t doing too badly. He knows they went on an airplane, he knew they wouldn’t be waiting at our home for us after work, he knew they went back to their own home. Which is far away. Like, further than down the block. Far away to him is ten blocks away.
The storm I refer to is coping with the behaviours that were allowed during their visit.
Some are great, and ‘coping’ isn’t quite the right word. Enjoying, perhaps. Cameron now will often remember that instead of saying, “Milk! I want more milk,” he should say, “Mommy, can I have some more milk please?” The please sometimes gets stuck in odd places or said three times for good measure. He’s getting up (accompanied) to go pee in the night instead of wetting his diaper. I’m not yet ready to cope with the laundry involved with night training him – that will come around Christmas I imagine when laundry is easier! He’s better at coping with decision making – this one or that one? “No,” is still the answer still sometimes though. At supper, when reminded, he will ask to leave the table.
I’d figured Cameron would insist on eating supper while sitting on my lap. Grandma found it easier to keep him at the table by doing that. This is something I cured him of months and months ago after going nuts, unable to eat my own supper with him. The good news is that he didn’t insist on that tonight.
The tough part were other supper time problems. A while ago I found out that Cameron is very possessive about his food – if he doesn’t eat, a threat to eat it if he doesn’t will get him putting food in his mouth. Once it is ‘his’ nobody else had better eat it unless he says they can! But during the grandparent visit this got out of control. Totally. He’d eat maybe two or three bites on his own, then require someone to load up his spoon for him at the very least, or spoon stuff right into his mouth, with threats at every morsel of one of us eating it instead. If refused, someone would move to follow up on the threat, then give him another chance. So. Supper evolved into every single bite veering towards an adult mouth then Cameron’s.
I’m sick and tired of that game. I’d thought I’d let him adjust to not having Grandma and Grandpa around for a few days before breaking that habit, but I just couldn’t cope with it tonight. It started. “If you don’t eat it Cameron, I will,” was answered with a big solid, “NO.” So I ate it. This was maybe bite three of supper. He SCREAMED. And howled. And cried. And wailed. He wanted THAT bite. THAT cheese. THAT soup. No other spoonful would do. I pressed the point. “You’re not going to eat any more?” A big definite NO WAY was shrieked. Okay. I reminded him that this meant I would eat it. “NO WAY I DON’T WANT IT,” was the response, and he got down off his chair. To which he was immediately returned, with a reminder to ask. He managed this much.
I dumped the remainder of his soup into my bowl and ate it quickly to the tune of shrieks before announcing, “Okay, supper is over, it’s bath time.”
So now I guess I give him three bite’s worth at supper. I’ve said before that I’ll do this … but need to follow through with it. If he eats those, he can have more. No loading up his spoon, no threats to eat his, and not enough given that it’s a waste if it doesn’t get eaten. He does get plenty of good food at daycare, though I need to ask what the afternoon snacks are. If they’re high sugar or not so healthy, I’ll ask that they’re restricted. It’s not like the kid is starving.
Someone please remind me of this in a few years when he’s eating so much I can’t keep the fridge full?