Brittany Hartgrove Mahoney
Those damn little happy fish were going to be the death of me yesterday. I knew this situation would eventually come into our lives... I just wish I had my hubby with me when it happened!
Here's the deal, Avie can't eat unless she takes her enzymes. She can only have so many enzymes in a day and her meals are scheduled so that we don't go over her maximum number (currently, we are staying well under her max- but that's not always the case). So, to all those parents who get to throw cheerios at their kids as a distraction anytime they please: YOU SUCK! Haha, no I'm kidding. I have my many moments of jealousy for those snacking situations.
Take yesterday for example; we went to a birthday party at a park, just Avalyn and I. The parents are my friends and we've played with the kids before. All was supposed to be easy, right? NOT. Goldfish galore!!
Kid-sized plastic cups were filled to the brim with those cheesy little crunches of deliciousness. The golden bounty was overflowing as tiny hands jammed into the stash, sparkling bites of joy landing all over the concrete just waiting to be scooped up by my "always starving" (you would honestly think I didn't feed the little piglet) and just now walking toddler.
This is when I start the math in my head. When did I feed her last? How many enzymes has she had? How many will I need to give her now? If she eats now, will she be hungry in an hour- if not, then when????? As I'm answering these questions in my head and trying to come to a snack-time conclusion, Avie is turning into a tiny little vacuum. I'm running after her and smacking fish out of her hands like a damn basketball shot blocker (not in my house!). Occasionally having to squeeze her cheeks to scoop one out of her mouth. She would scream and then run to the next smiling yellow dot she saw.
It was so embarrassing. Not all the parents there knew why I wasn't letting her eat and I just looked cruel. I tried distracting her with a ball or the playground, but that was another issue because it was so damn hot outside that she was sweaty and red-cheeked. I was getting scared of her overheating!
When I finally answered all my enzyme questions and had thrown away most of the dropped Goldfish, I started getting the enzymes ready. Try keeping a fish-crazed toddler still while you break capsules to dump on a baby spoon of applesauce, on a crowded picnic table, in the wind. Pretty much impossible.
And that's when I saw it. The little red, glistening triangles of what was going to become my savior. Watermelon.
Fruit can be eaten without an enzyme and it just so happens that my toddler loves fruit. I shoved a piece in her hand and the angels sang. She stood still and consumed happily while I finished the enzyme dumping. We were both exhausted after she had a snack (pizza and gold fish, obviously).
It is really hard to keep a toddler away from snacks, especially when the other kids are eating. I know this won't be the last time we run into this problem... and honestly, I think we will all be better for it. Instead of giving my daughter food, I will actually have to play with her, read to her, talk to her. Instead of stuffing her mouth with empty calories (not much a concern for CFers) she will need to find a way to entertain herself. All good, positive things.
But the next time I go to a birthday party, I'm bringing a baby-grabbing buddy.