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8.11.2012

The hunger to be right

After I wrote yesterday's post, things didn't go according to the plan I described. We got home from the skate park and Doc had a headache. It turned out he didn't eat his lunch and his stomach was empty as a balloon. I had the fixin's for subs and figured we'd solve everyone's problems with an early supper. Not so easy. For some reason Doc decided that he wasn't hungry.

Suddenly, I was stuck with a connundrum. The kid is queasy with lack of food and he won't eat.  Now, most kids will accept the idea that filling their tummies will make them feel better. But Doc is no ordinary kid. He's more stubborn than an oak plank.

This turned it into a whole other issue: I'm not going to eat because I've been told to. Now, when Doc gets like this, he can last longer than most teenagers. Once last year, at the age of 5, he stood in the middle of the room, where I told him to stay, for two hours refusing to admit he was wrong about something. So now, instead of resolving a gut ache and moving on we were in a battle of wills.

I couldn't just send him off because his hunger was giving him trouble. Besides that, giving in to a kid this stubborn is a huge mistake. Not a precedent I want to set. There he sat for an hour, refusing to eat a thin sandwich. He moped, cried, whined and shifted but wouldn't bite. I made it look like I could care less so he didn't think he was getting to me. The truth is, besides how pathetic it was, it was sad to watch him be so self destructive.

I explained why he needed to eat and, like flu medicine, you have to take it to get better. He acknowledged that he was just being stubborn but still wouldn't eat, all the while whimpering about his gut ache. He finally swallowed most of it, went downstairs and took a nap. When he came up an hour later, he was feeling fine and wondered if there was any dessert.

This boy is going to be a handful.