I will show you what’s been on my sweet, baby niece’s menu this week and speak to a couple of myths I try to address whenever I can.
As a mom to three grown daughters that grew up drinking raw milk, fatty animal meats and organs, bone broths, eggs, cultured dairy, and organic, seasonal garden delights, I feel secure in my position to report that feeding kids real foods won’t turn them into social pariahs hanging out in front of the local 7-11, begging for coin so they can mainline their next dr. pepper slurpee.
What feeding your kids real foods, rich in pastured nutrient dense animal foods, will do is allow them the rarified phenomenon of knowing what is to feel good. To have energy. To sleep well. To have stable emotions. To think clearly. This feedback from their bodies is their foundation and will forever be their touchstone as they grow up and go out on their own.
That’s what you give them. How heartbreaking to witness how many children grow up not even knowing how empty, destructive foodstuffs warp their emotions, steal their energy, and inflame their minds and bodies. They can go through their whole lives without even making the connection. It’s an absolute travesty.
Yes, the kids become teenagers and go to their friends and they come home with a food hangover that lasts days and guess what? It’s a clear delineation between good food=feel food and bad food=feel bad. It’s their lessons to learn and the teacher is tough. So much better than any words a parent offers.
But they don’t get that lesson if they don’t have that foundation. And, we believed, to have that foundation we had to make health paramount. That’s wasn’t just food of course, it was connection to nature, a strong familial bond with unconditional love, discipline, etc., but here we are talking specifically about food.
We only had one shot at laying a foundation which, in our then tight financial situation with three kids, meant sacrifice. No vacations but camping, thrift stores, a crappy car, borrowing books and videos from the library, military rental housing, board games and parks – that was our world.
Also in our world were luscious meals with the most beautiful foods from the most beautiful farms to nourish and grow the most beautiful humans in our lives.
We very rarely bent on our conviction to feed our children as we did, but we did make alternatives they could have for birthday parties or team celebrations. We travelled with our own food. We set clear and firm boundaries with family and friends, bringing our own food if necessary. Yes, it’s uncomfortable. Yes, you have to be willing to take it on the chin sometimes. But that’s your job, that’s how we, as parents, grow up, too.
I wanted to add, because this comes up a fair bit, if you set clear boundaries and you have people around you that continuously cross them, your problems are much greater than food. The food is just a symptom. Maybe give @the.holistic.psychologist a follow so you can start growing out of these old toxic patterns that are no longer serving you and that we need to break out of, if not for us, then as another form of nourishment for our beloveds.
So nuanced, eh? So much “stuff” underlying what looks so simple on the surface. But there you have it – this grown up gig is a trap, no way out, best to rise to the occasion. If it helps at all, keep in mind that you’re operating in the abnormal situation that is our corrupted, manipulated food system and looking like the “weirdo” is a very good sign indeed.