Is everyone’s morning like this?

Look how blonde, and clean, and good-natured these kids are. If I put my kids' chairs this close together, it would spark a violent territory dispute.

I like to make breakfast for the kids in the morning. I do. I enjoy mornings when I don’t leave before they do, and I get to see them off to school. I even enjoy cooking breakfast for them– we do have cold cereal but if it’s up to me, I always make them something myself. They each leave for school at different times, so it can sometimes be challenging. But the past few mornings especially have been like this:

Cameron, who goes to school first, will come down and search for carbs. That kid would live on nothing but carbs if possible (and, really, who could blame him?). Now, I realize that I could just tell him what he’s eating and be done with it– but I’m really trying to teach him how to make healthy choices, so every morning is a complex series of negotiations. As he stirs his oatmeal, he asks if he can also have a granola bar “for energy” (“for energy” being his number-one reason why he should have any food, ever. Ice cream after dinner? “For energy.” Soda in a restaurant? “For energy.” The rest of my Frappuccino, of which he has no chance in hell? “For energy”).  Back to the granola bar request: I remind him that granola bars and his oatmeal are from the same food group, and suggest a banana instead. Cameron counters that too much banana in his oatmeal “takes over the city,” and asks if he can have an English muffin. When I point out that an English muffin is not in a different food group either, he will look at the label and note, in tones of pleased surprise, “But look, Mom! It’s whole-grain!” As though this will magically cause me to acquiesce. This goes on until he has eaten a bowl of oatmeal and half an orange. Every day. Without fail.

Gabby has fallen in love with eggs. Specifically, sunny-side-up eggs. So she’s pretty simple: I make her some eggs, I toast her an English muffin, she eats the rest of Cammy’s orange. Done…… UNLESS I don’t make the eggs right. If there is the slightest tinge of brown around the edges, I might as well give it to the dog and start over, because she won’t be eating it.

Addie is the reigning queen of seven different breakfasts per day, of which she ingests nothing. She comes downstairs, sees Cammy’s oatmeal, and wants that… only when the bowl is in front of her she rejects it because “it’s too gross.” I make her some toast and she drops it, upside-down, on the floor. She requests eggs like her sister, but god forbid I flip them over to cook the “oaks” as she calls them– if her egg yolks aren’t bright yellow and runny as hell, she wants no part of it. And make no mistake: she won’t be eating it either way. She just likes to poke her fork into the “oak,” watch it run into her English muffin (and ruin that for eating), then ask for pancakes which she will leave on the table to congeal.  

At this point, since the J’s indifference to eating is well-established, you might be wondering what she does eat, if anything. The answer, my friends, is macaroni & cheese and whatever I make myself for breakfast. It has to be truly something I intended to eat– she cannot be fooled. I can sit down with a plate of food until my ass fuses to the seat– she takes no notice unless I truly intended to eat it myelf. Since I don’t eat anything more than a banana if I’m going to run in the morning, this means that the J might eat a banana, or she might eat nothing. I know that a whole bunch of you are clutching your pearls that I send my child to school having eaten nothing for breakfast; all I can say is I’VE ALREADY MADE THE CHILD 7 DIFFERENT BREAKFASTS IT’S NOT LIKE SHE DOESN’T HAVE AMPLE OPPORTUNITY TO EAT I DON’T KNOW HOW SHE STAYS ALIVE EITHER SHE’S LIKE AN AIR PLANT GET OFF MY BACK GOD.

By the way: I ran this morning, came back, and made a bowl of yogurt with blueberries to eat while I typed this out. Addie– who had been in my room watching a movie– came downstairs before I had taken more than two bites, took my bowl without a word, and went back up the stairs.

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