Thursday, June 20, 2013

Chipmunk Cheeks

To my son Tommy,

You have been doing very well on the food front.  Yesterday you added grapes and potatoes to the list of foods you will chew and swallow.  You also reaffirmed you will chew and swallow bananas.  With the list of available foods steadily growing, it really inspires us to keep going.  It also inspires us to find new tactics to encourage eating.  The latest approach is showing amazement with the magic trick of disappearing food in the mouth by the Great Tommy-dini Master Food Magician.

Unfortunately you have a growing list of foods that you spit out and you have been inspired to find new tactics as well.  The latest approach for you is in the mouth and straight to the chipmunk cheek storage area.  You seem to hope this satisfies your parents and they just back off a bit on the whole into the belly thing.  You aren't too good at hiding the food this way and we still tend to demand you try and chew and swallow.  But honestly, just getting food into your mouth would have seemed impossible less than one month ago.  So perhaps our expectations have grown faster than your willingness to brave the depths of cuisine and we have to learn to be happy and accept your food reality.

I find this pattern occurs in all aspects of life.  One minute you are saying, for example, how happy you would be if you could just find an extra hundred bucks somewhere and the next minute after winning a scratch off for a hundred bucks you are lamenting that you didn't win a thousand.  Or for another example, you say how if the computers could do this one thing at work how you will save ten hours a week doing your job. When the change comes about you immediately want the computers to do twenty more things.  The guy living on the streets just wants a roof over his head.  The guy with a roof over head wants a bigger roof or more house.  The guy with a big house wants a swimming pool.  And on and on.  I guess this is human nature and your mom and I seem to have fallen into that trap with your eating challenges.  The only suggestion I have for you with avoiding this pitfall is to be mindful of this trap.  When you recognize you have once again fallen in, step back, slow down, and turn a grateful eye to what you have, what you accomplished, the realities of your present situation, and how rich you are with people that love you.  Then sit back and laugh at your son talking all garbled while clenching his teeth trying to convince you there is no food in his cheek.

Sincerely with love from your dad,

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