I was giving some things some thought and got a bit stumped. Help me out, will you?
Here’s how things look from here:
It started with our mothers, so to speak, as those who actually started this train were not likely literal mothers, at least not mothers of many, who won us women a vast emancipation from kitchens the country over. Goodbye, dishpan hands! Hello, Kraft Macaroni-N-Cheese!
It gained steam with my literal mother, who worked outside the home, because what other choice did she have? My Dad couldn’t make enough to tie two ends together. (Thank you Ronald Reagan.) But my literal mother was not as emancipated from the kitchen as those figurative mothers expected and thus she had dishpan hands AND we kids ate a lot of Velveeta. A LOT of Velveeta.
It continues with me, a mother, married to a pastor, and thus very, very fortunate to be barefoot and pregnant in a parsonage kitchen. I’m home and I have time to labor with real cheese. I don’t think my kids have ever tasted Velveeta or Chez Whiz or that powdered yellow glue you can sprinkle with water, mix with “noodles” and call food.
But, here’s “it:”
I do not have a healthy relationship with food. I cannot have either a scale or a full length mirror in my house. My husband has forbidden any and all “appearance talk” within our walls with the hope that our kids will not grow up crazy. I cook everything from scratch because I have to—HAVE TO. I ate a lot of fake-but-fast food growing up and I hate food, so I figure the more time and effort I put into the food my kids eat the better chance they have at escaping social disease surrounding food. Doesn’t that make sense?
I do not know a single person who enjoys food in moderation or with healthy abandon. The definitions of “eating disorder” are expanding every day as every day people are getting more creative at abusing their food. And it’s food, simple nutrition, a basic pleasure of life. When did something so basic become (scary music) THE ENEMY? And why?
I’d really like to blame Velveeta, but I think it may be more than that. I spend a lot of time with our food and use the best ingredients we can afford. My eldest child is six. She is showing signs toward crazy. She's always been picky, but this feels different. I see that now she’s thinking as she pushes that balanced meal around on her plate.
What is going on? I would really appreciate it if someone would join me in blaming Velveeta. I'm already aware that I'm a colossal screw-up.