Anyone who knows Safety Guy knows that he is a picky eater. (That's like saying, "Frank Sinatra was a singer.") I know various family members have for years and years been mystified at his, um, shall we say eccentric and narrow eating habits. Some other people have been quick to ascribe his apparent disregard for "normal" kid dietary preferences to him being spoiled - i.e., he's picky because we didn't make him eat whatever we put in front of him.
We decided years ago that we had too many issues to deal with concerning Safety Guy, and breakfast, lunch, and dinner didn't need to be pitched battles every day. After one memorable meal where he vomited up what we'd just had him consume under duress, we decided we needed to pick our battles better. As long as he ate a healthy balance overall, we decided we'd cut him some slack and put our energy into more pressing needs - like social interaction and life skills, and mitigating meltdowns and tantrums. The corollary to this is that his younger sister, Princess Yakyak, also got more slack with what she'd eat. She doesn't have her brother's bionic taste buds, but she is still a somewhat picky eater herself, although she'll eat many more foods than her brother. They have a couple quirks in common: neither of them have ever taken a liking to any meal involving sauce over pasta (except Kraft macaroni and cheese), and neither of them like ground beef or sausage in any form.
To be fair, both kids have been much more willing to try new things this past year. They don't like everything they try (who does?), but at least they'll taste new things. Princess Yakyak will finally eat lasagna, bacon, and apples with the peel on, and Safety Guy will eat real fried haddock, pineapple (in very small amounts), and cookies with chocolate chips. So they have been making progress with trying and eating new things.
ANYHOW, what happened last night has to qualify as a minor miracle of some sort. We spent this weekend visiting family. At my parents' house, my Mom made a wonderful meal of stuffed shells with sauce (made with ground beef and sausage), tossed salad, and garlic bread. Out of this, our kids would usually eat the garlic bread, and nothing else. Last night BOTH kids tried the shells and the sauce after a single request from me, and BOTH kids LIKED IT. Well, Safety Guy disemboweled his shells (he doesn't care for ricotta cheese), but he ate the meat sauce and the pasta, and said it was good and had seconds, and Princess Yakyak ate all of her shell with sauce too. The adults around the table sat and stared at the kids as this happened. We could hardly believe our eyes. Hallelujah, will wonders never cease!
Sometimes it's the small things, isn't it?