How to Eat an Elephant

This week’s feeding therapy was, by the wife’s report, not a success.  Apparently the Monster pinched, kicked, screamed and anything else he could come up with, rather than actually eat a little bit of grilled chicken.  (Which is funny, because he’s eaten it before, as well as plenty of other white meats.)

But one day’s therapy isn’t really the yardstick that we should be measuring this by.

In the couple of months that he’s been going to feeding therapy, there’s been minor improvements in the system.  We’ve gone to “food friends” – a couple of anamorphic pieces of food on velcro sheets that he pulls off when he takes a bite of something – and M&Ms as rewards for each food friend he earns.  And that’s not always the most successful when we’re trying to get him to eat something other than pizza for dinner…

But he is eating more than pizza for dinner.  Since we started with feeding therapy, he’s reintroduced macaroni and cheese to his diet, even if he’s only eating one noodle or two at a time.  He’s also now eating melon, which is something he wasn’t eating previously at all.  (We’re usually having him have mac and pizza at dinner, since he’s protesting after most of a small portion of mac that he’s still hungry, but that’s fine by me.)  And, when we’re out, he’ll eat chicken fingers and the occasional hot-dog, so it’s good enough that we can go out to a family restaurant without worrying that he’ll starve.

And it’s slow progress.  I think that next time, the wife is going to take a different kind of pasta-and-cheese, to see if we can get him to synthesize the idea that “pasta and cheese” is acceptable rather than simply “macaroni and cheese” is okay.  (I suggested that milk should come in there somewhere too, since he’s only been drinking juice-and-water, but we’ll see.)

But what is important to remember is that these are really the first things added to his repertoire since his food choices started narrowing.  It’s progress, and we have to keep reminding ourselves that any goal is only accomplished by a whole lotta steps along the way…

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