DC was always a big fan of Cheerios. He eats them every day for breakfast and sometimes just as a snack.
His ‘weekday’ breakfast consists of dry Cheerios (no milk, ever), a banana (you knew that), an apple, a glass of orange juice and a glass of water.
Over the last few months or so, I noticed he was not finishing his Cheerios. He was handing back the bowl with only a few spoonfuls being eaten.
First I thought that he just decided he no longer liked Cheerios. It would not be the first time that he LOVED something for years and then just stopped eating it.
I got him a different, agreed upon cereal. He liked it but again started handing it back to me after only a few spoonfuls.
I started thinking that there was something wrong with one or more of his teeth and maybe it hurt to chew the cereal. He said “yes” and pointed to his tooth.
I took him to the dentist and they found nothing wrong.
Yes, I know! I asked a leading question and got the answer he thought he should give. I should know better at this point.
Thinking that maybe he was just becoming impatient with the chewing and just wanted to finish and move on with his morning, or that because he had lost so much weight, he really wasn’t that hungry anymore – I started giving him much smaller portions.
He still handed it back to me after a few bites.
We alternated between the Cheerios that he still insisted that he loved and the Chex that he still said he liked, but he still handed it back to me.
Everyday after he finishes eating the food portion of his breakfast, he takes his juice and water to the other room and finishes it while using his iPad and writing his ‘princess papers’. This is what he has done every single morning for years.
I realized that I was partially correct with my ‘impatience’ assumption when one day I after he handed me his cereal bowl, I moved it to his ‘spot’ in the other room with his iPad and princess papers. He finished it while he was watching/writing.
The other day he handed me his cereal and said “I want to take a break”.
“I want to take a break” was new, usually he says “finished” when he gives me his bowl. I realized that the other issue was that he would not eat his apple or banana until he was finished with his cereal.
I told him that it was okay to eat a little cereal and then have some fruit and then go back to the cereal.
He could even have some banana first! (GASP)
He thought that notion was just too hilarious to even consider and I must have been joking.
So I moved his cereal into the other room.
With that gone, he was able to eat his banana.
And with that gone, he moved onto his apple.
Bottom line; he thinks he has to finish one thing before he moves on to another. If he wants to move on to the other before whatever he chose to eat first is gone, it has to be removed from his sight (even if he does still want to finish it) until he has eaten whatever he wants to eat next.
He just can’t have it there in front of him.
he ate the rest of his cereal in the other room.
Updated (before publishing): Although DC seemed to brush off the talk we had the morning before and ate his cereal in the other room – it must have sunk in later on.
The following morning he showed me his bowl and said:
“I want to take a break”
Instead of handing it to me to remove from his sight, he put the bowl down in front of him and started on his banana!!!!
It did not have to be removed and he went back to it later!
He still announced it as if he needed permission, but he moved on.