Monday, 16 May 2011

Nothing Worth Having Comes Easy

Yesterday the man and I had two mealtime battles with son number one. The first at lunch time, it took us fifteen minutes to get him to taste a piece of cake. A piece of cake! You’d have thought we were feeding him cockroach, although being 4 he probably would have got a kick out of that. At dinner, another twenty minutes spent coaxing him into trying a roasted shallot. I am reminded of that old saying “nothing worth having comes easy.”

I never thought I’d have a fussy child, having always been happy to eat anything put in front of me (bar liver, I just can’t get past the offalyness of it). I’ll try anything once, except maybe eating monkey brains directly from the cut open head (or is that an urban legend?). I think even I might struggle with that one, but never say never eh?

Anyway, it’s a real battle to get my son to eat anything other than his usual diet of sausages, pasta, and two types of vegetables: peas and sweetcorn (or what we call Pirate Treasure, left over from a previously victorious battle). And son number 2 (who used to be a big eater) is now copying his behaviour and turning his nose up on food I know he loves. I go through periods of apathy where I just can’t be bothered with the fight so feed them chicken dippers or sausages every day, which plagues me with an overwhelming sense of failure, what kind of mother am I anyway? So this time I am determined to persevere. I know that despite it being depressing, frustrating and above all hard work, it’ll be worth it in the end, when they will both sit down to Moules Mariniere and devour them with gusto (I can dream can’t I?).

Working hard for something may not seem attractive at the time, but I think often it’s the hardship that makes us appreciate things more when they finally come to us. The car you’ve saved up for feels all the more sweet when you finally drive it home, and the dress I’ve starved myself to get into feels even more satisfying than simply buying it in a larger size. Besides, the easy option can all too often come back and bite you in the ass. The cheapo car might seem like a good deal, until within days of owning it, the head gasket has gone. Being immortalised in a photo wearing that dress in a size bigger than I had planned, posted on Facebook for all to see, taunting me with my own laziness and post pregnancy paunch. And when I don’t try to at least encourage more adventurous eating habits in my kids there is a nagging doubt in the back of my mind, keeping me awake at night “will I end up like one of those mothers passing MaccyD’s through the school fence to prevent my boys from starving to death on those oh so healthy school dinners?” Victory is so much sweeter when it’s hard won.

But what with everything we have going on in our lives we’re busy enough without constantly taking the hard road. I’m all for the satisfaction of hard work, but I think you have to pick your battles. Work hard for the things that really matter, and let the rest go.

I don’t know who said nothing worth having comes easy, but they were pretty spot on. Who wants an easy life anyway? It must be pretty boring to have everything handed to you on a plate. You hear about lottery winners throwing their money away and ending up far worse off than they started, “It” girls given every available opportunity but spending half their lives in The Priory. Nope, I’ll take my hard roads, and feel a smug satisfaction when I get to my destination. Moules Mariniere anyone?

No comments:

Post a Comment