Monday, August 27, 2012

Enjoy Your Food

To my son Tommy,

I wonder if when either your mother or I feed you if we are doing you a disservice.  You see when parents feed a child it all about getting to the end.  Bigger spoonfuls and quicker pace are the tools often implemented in accomplishing this goal.  But I can't help to think we are setting you up for failure in your future diet.

One of the keys to staying fit is to eat "mindfully" with small bites and enjoying the flavor of each bite.  When we shovel in the food we are teaching you a learned behavior that is destined to make you fight the battle of the bulge in your later years.  This is even more concerning to me than your lack of variety in your current diet.  Then I sit and ponder what other little learned behaviors you are grabbing from our actions that will make life harder.

That is one of the difficulties of parenting.  It isn't as much what you say or what you intend to impart on your child,  it is more about what you do and the littlest habits that your child grabs from his observations.  These letters, obviously, are filled with words and lessons I want to teach you,  but they are useless if I don't give you the tools of life through example and practice.

So the next time you grab a spoonful of yogurt,  I will be encouraging you to enjoy the flavor and the taste.  I will hope you take the time to really savor and appreciate your food as you grow.  Small bites, big enjoyment, and just maybe you will miss the extra 70 or 100 pounds your old man has put on by age 38.

Sincerely with love from your dad,

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