Should we eat like our children?

I used to eat like a dog.
I would bolt my dinner down in minutes because I have something else more urgent to do/the children are doing something they shouldn’t be doing/the ironing hasn’t done itself/Desperate Housewives is just about to start.
Sure I have a whole raft of excuses.

How many meals have I eaten and not actually tasted?
Shocking I know when you actually think about it, but I have done this same thing many many times.
I’ve even stood and eaten my dinner from the dish I cooked it in because I didn’t have time to serve it up!

And then I thought, but these things have all been learned. They are in our subconscious and it has almost becomes second nature to do it.
Watching my two children eat has been a bit of a revelation.
They eat at their own pace. They put their knife and fork down between mouthfuls. They chew and chew and chew. They finish the minute they have had enough.
I think we could all learn something from our children.
They are clearly eating the way we used to before we became so busy we started shovelling it in.
They haven’t been tainted by experience. They have no real demands on their time.
And if they’re not hungry they simply won’t eat.

There is a strict rule in this house that ‘treats’ are never allowed between meals and only after you’ve eaten your dinner.
And yes, they always ALWAYS want something, but I can honestly say that many times they don’t actually eat it because they are full up.
That’s how I want to be.

So just recently I have been watching my kids eat. Really watching them.
We all eat breakfast together and I finish way ahead of them.
So at lunch time I try to slooooow right down to match their pace.
Boy it’s tough.

From now on my aim is to eat food for a. fuel and b. to enjoy it.
And tomorrow night the food fest begins with Hungarian goulash. Nom nom nom!
I might even share my recipe.

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