When Waleed was little [as opposed to the college professor he is now] he ate anything. Fettuccine. Stir Fry. Fish. And like a fish he wouldn't stop eating though given his high activity level his constant eating resulted in very little upward incline on the weight charts. Now, while he still eats anything from paper to pad thai [I'm fairly certain he's part goat], two to three bites in he waves his hand, annoyed, indicating he's done which isn't possible since he last ate four hours earlier and played more vigorously than even a certain Miami Heat basketball player [who really could have made more free throws on game six]. After that much activity, how can a few bites fill him up?
I'm told not to push it. Let him stop eating when he wants, after all, children never 'starve themselves to death'; when he's hungry he'll eat. Yes. I believe in my son's survival instinct. However. I take issue with the 'when he's hungry he'll eat' because while he does eat, since lately he wont eat during the day he is now hungry at approximately 1am, 4am, 5am. [And last night, up on the hour every hour] His survival instinct is interfering with my sleep instinct.
It's possible the waking is unrelated. He is [finally] getting teeth [four at once!] plus I read kids at this age can wake because they begin actively dreaming now and wake up screaming when they find themselves in a dark room when seconds earlier they were prancing around grabbing bunnies and running head first down the stairs [which is what I imagine is the stuff baby dreams are made of] but regardless, even if he was sleeping through the night, he needs to eat- I think?
The experts say you shouldn't teach your kid to clear their plate. It can lead to long-term eating and obesity issues. Yes. But. How do I make sure he's getting his nutrition when my kid is eating three bites per meal? Back home I'll just slog out the refusal getting a bite here and there be it through 'airplane' mode [as in make high pitched sounds to make him gape at me like I've officially lost it giving me the mouth opening large enough to stick a spoonful of food in]. Usually we make it to the end of the bowl in this way at home, but here amongst grandparents, he's somehow aware of his many sympathizers so puts on grand displays of protests which on the bright side leave me fairly confident he'll be thanking me for an Academy Award someday.
To be fair he does usually eat one meal a day with vigor, and he loves snacks like apple sauce and string cheese, its just that the chomping emptying the fridge baby of months past is no more despite the variety of foods I try offering him. Maybe this is just the new normal. Except, the hourly wakings is not sustainable. I woke this morning put two tea bags in a mug and stuck it in the microwave. Without water. The brain cells that I was slowly regenerating seem to be jumping ship once more. Sleep- it was nice while it lasted.
Can you relate? What are you doing, or plan to do, or have done to handle this eating or non-eating issue?