I was inspired to write this post tonight when I had to sit and feed Christopher – that’s right, the one who does NOT have autism – in order to get him to eat his dinner. I haven’t had to do that since he was about 10 months old. I got so sick and tired of hearing (cue the whiny voice) “I’m not hungry”. “I don’t really like this meal”, “If I give up dessert tonight, can I be excused?”. I finally sat him down, loaded up 5 giant spoonfuls of the hearty soup-in-a-bread-bowl I made tonight, and fed him like he was in a highchair.
Why am I the ONLY person in my house who ENJOYS her food? I will try anything and everything. There is only one food in the whole world that I won’t touch – that would be hot dogs (frankly, knowing what’s in those, I don’t think I’m missing much). I have a husband who refuses to eat vegetables of any kind, one son whose menu consists of cheese, hot dogs, chicken nugget breading, chips, and Cheez-Its, and another whose menu seems to be decreasing by the minute. Christopher used to be my com padre in the food battles in my house. He’d actually REQUEST that I buy broccoli at the grocery store. He’d watch me make salads and ask for pieces of green pepper, cucumber, and tomato. He’d dip pita chips in hummus with me and ask where the fruit tray was at his friends’ kiddie birthday parties. I’d brag to everyone that my son was just like me when it came to food – healthy and adventurous. My little junior foodie, who once even told me that he was going to be a chef when he grew up…………….and now wrinkles his nose up at my cooking.
I love food. It’s ironic that I’m married to someone who would live on steak, baked potatoes, and corn-on-the-cob every day if his arteries would let him. Over the last few years, I have subscribed to four different cooking magazines, collected a dozen or so cookbooks, set up recipe boxes on a handful of websites, and downloaded the Food Network App to my iPhone. I have sat in front of the TV writing down ingredients from Rachael Ray’s show, and stood in line for 2 hours to meet Giada de Laurentiis. My sister posted a little quiz on Facebook called 100 Foods to Try Before You Die and I was so disappointed to see that I had only eaten about 35 foods on the list. Not that I’m too interested in trying octopus or ox-tail soup, but I guess I envisioned myself as having a pretty interesting palette.
I read a book last summer called “The Kitchen Daughter” about a young woman with Asperger’s Syndrome who immerses herself in cooking. I found myself absolutely intrigued with the descriptions of the smells, tastes, and textures of the foods. The author really captured the sense of comfort that good food can bring.
Hopefully, one day, my little junior foodie will make his way back into the kitchen.
Meanwhile, don’t you think the title of this post would make a great show on the Food Network????