07/31/2015 05:31 EDT | Updated 07/31/2016 05:59 EDT

A Letter to Mom and Dad About How to Feed Me

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Dear Mom and Dad,

I need you to know a few things about feeding me. As you haven't yet deciphered the language of babble, I thought a letter would be helpful:

1. Stop trying to hide veggies and "healthy" stuff in other foods -- I can handle them straight up. Sure I may not devour those green leafies you put on my tray from day one, but unbeknownst to you, I'm slowly learning to like them. It might take me a few (or many) more tries to appreciate some foods, but as you always tell me, be patient!

2. Don't be so stingy with the spices. Being a baby doesn't mean I don't enjoy a little zing with my food. OK, so my tastebuds aren't quite ready for Aunt Shirley's roaring hot spicy wings but I don't appreciate all this bland tasteless stuff any more than the next person. Have you already forgotten about my nine months in the womb, surrounded by a plethora (yes, I did just use that word) of flavours that mom was eating? Same goes with every time she nursed me. Don't be afraid, bring on the cumin!

3. I know when I'm hungry and when I'm full. This may be a shocker to you, but save your worries and frustration for something worthwhile (like when I discover the magic of dropping your most precious items in the toilet). I know you guys weren't given a job description at the hospital but if you had it would have read: "Your job: prepare healthy food and serve. Baby's job: eat (or don't) as much as you want (or don't want)." I may be a beginner at this eating business but I promise you, I'm a pro at knowing when I'm full and when I'm still hungry. No pressure on your part required.

4. Let me make a mess (I prefer the term "food art"). This includes squishing berries in my hand, smearing them on any surface I can reach, then dropping the remaining juices on the floor for the dog to lick up. Seriously though, considering how new I am to this food business, give me a chance to explore it all -- textures, smells, tastes. The more you allow me to "play" (I believe they call it "sensory exploration") with my food, the more I can learn about eating. Relax, it's not as if I'll still be doing this when I'm grown up (aside from the odd pea up my nose for a few laughs).

5. And last but not least, mom and dad, thank you! I know it's not always easy feeding me, but your efforts do not go unnoticed. For every discarded carrot you've had to pick up off the floor, every gourmet meal you've made despite your exhaustion which I took one cheeky look at and said "no" to, and every article you've read trying to ensure that you're doing a good job -- I can feel the love you have for me with each and every meal.


Your little one


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