Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Dinner Time

Dinner time, at our house, is a family affair. A meal is made and we all sit down to eat it together. It's not a novel concept, although we are often enough viewed as strange for not having a children's dinner separate (food or time) from an adult dinner that I worry for the future of our kind. So maybe it is a little strange to make one meal and expect everyone in the house to come and eat it together...but it's our way.

Lars has, of late, not been eating dinner. He's been sliding down the slope of not eating for a few months now, taking up most of our dinner time talking, then slowly lumbering through a few bites of food while the rest of us are pushing the last bites around our plates or clearing up. He's missed dessert on occasion, as we've served while he still had his dinner before him. Today, though, things came to a head. I'd made grilled cheese & turkey sandwiches, served with chips & dip and celery sticks. All things everyone likes and not a meal we have very often. Potato chips are especially rare - they only happen three or four times a year. I figured everyone would be excited but Lars looked at the table and burst into tears. He sobbed, "WHY DID YOU PUT MEAT IN MY SANDWICH," and threw himself at the floor. Did I miss a memo about his becoming a vegetarian?

Chris and I looked at each other, looked at Ross, and began to eat. Lars figured out pretty quickly that he wasn't getting any attention, so he sobbed freshly and ran upstairs. Ross made a move as if to go after him but Chris broke the No Speaking With Your Mouth Full rule to mumble, "Sit," at Ross and the three of us finished dinner.

After dinner, Ross went downstairs to get street pads together for a little shooting practice in the driveway while Chris cleared up. Lars appeared in the hall, peeking furtively around the wall into the dining room. Startled by the clean table, he demanded to know where his dinner was! "Dinner's over," I said, just as Chris zipped the uneaten sandwich into a baggie. "Maybe you'll eat with us tomorrow?"

1 comment:

The Plaid Sheep said...

This is familiar to me. One of my nephews liked to use food rejection as a way to gain control. On one occasion he also claimed to have forgotten how to read.