Food and Carver
Now that Carver’s tried several kinds of food, I think it important to document his behavior therewith.
I think it will make sense to think of food like a drug to him. When the child has food in front of him, whether it be chicken, eggs, even green beans or broccoli, he is in absolute euphoria. He slurps down three or four pieces at a time, dancing in his little chair, as happy as can be. Before he gets close to running out of food, he babbles to us in a warning tone, as if to say, “Daddy, code red! I’m down to 6 bites left!”
Heaven help you if you are caught without his next course when his tray is cleared. Before a second passes from his last bite, he looks desperately around his tray for any stray morsel of food, and if none is found, withdrawal sets in. He wails like a banshee, apparently in the worst pain a human being can endure. “Why am I not eating right this minute?” he seems to shout. Mind you, this display happens at any stage of the meal; He may have eaten a whole egg, a full slice of bread, a handful of broccoli, and a dozen spoonfuls of fruit, but still he wails.
Any type of food will do. We struggle to get Avey to eat 5 bites of green beans in a 30-minute meal, but just yesterday I cut up 12 Avey-sized bites of green beans, put them in front of Carver, and they were gone in about 3 minutes.
Just like an addict, the boy has triggers. Many times a day, even 15 minutes after he’s eaten a meal that would satisfy me, if he spies somebody going through the cupboards, he gets it into his head that he’s hungry. He’s constantly under the table, scanning for dropped crumbs.
We’ve discovered that we cannot say “food” or “eat” aloud, for fear of setting him off on another frenzy. I’ve learned to be cautious about when I eat, timing it so that he’s occupied elsewhere, or taking a nap. Otherwise, he’s sure to be standing, tugging on my leg, begging for just a taste of whatever it is I’m having.
I might worry if he were gaining unseemly amounts of weight, but he’s still a fairly slender guy. I might worry that we aren’t feeding him enough, but I honestly can’t see how a stomach of that size can fit everything he stuffs into it during a 20-minute binge. Maybe if we balance out his greens with slabs of butter, it will slow his appetite.