We just spent 2+ days at Grandma’s house where rules were lax and I slacked in my attention to what went into my kids’ mouths…..not that my dinner choice below made any difference.
So, while driving back to Columbus tonight with the kids (alone, I might add), I realized that we would be taking the almost three hour drive right through dinner time. This meant I had to stop and order drive-thru food to keep the kids and myself sane (and awake). Burger King has these little mini-Krytal-like burgers and chicken sandwiches which come in a four pack that aid in helping to save money and not waste food. I made it clear to all three children that they could choose between beef or chicken. They said they wanted one of each which made the math work out perfectly for us all. I conquered the speaker and pick-up window with ease and parked to make lap trays and squirt ketchup/sauces.
Did you know that my sweet daughter really wanted chicken nuggets? She thought I could read her brain when she answered my question with, “chicken”. So, for the next 45 minutes of our drive, she cried….declaring her disdain and frustration with her chicken in sandwich form and not in the usual processed nugget form (nutritious, I know…..and to think that I want to attempt this). She was so distraught that she refused the sandwich (and fries – horrors!) and said, “Mama, I’m sad and mad!”. When she realized I wasn’t going to give her what she wanted, she took her chicken patty and tore it in half so she could justify not eating it at all. I looked at her in the rear mirror and saw her pouting, crying, and keeping an eye on me. When she caught my glance, she declared, “Mama. You have broken my heart and my chicken patty. Now I will go hungry forever!”.
She asked once more if I would stop to get her what she wanted so she wouldn’t be mad at me anymore. I instructed her to take responsibility and eat what’s been given to her – or go hungry. That made her angry but I told her to stop fussing and talking about it because I wasn’t going to change my mind.
As we kept driving, she began to nibble at the sandwich and eventually gobbled it all down. I smiled to myself and remembered a powerful statement from a post I read a while back:
…if I am willing to die for you, then having you upset with me because I am protecting you is a relatively small thing in my world. – Chris Brauns
And to think that she asked for dessert when we got home!