When I decided I was going to make my own baby food, it was mainly to save money. Sure, there might be some extra additives in baby food…but who cares, really? These companies would get sued beyond belief if they were putting things in baby food that was truly bad for our babies. And when I decided to breastfeed, it was for two reasons. One, the obvious money savings again, and two the antibodies and health benefits were worth giving it a shot. Again, however…I was never against feeding my baby formula. We have great scientific advancements that have allowed us to create some amazing products that are just fine for our babies!
I am on several facebook groups that discuss baby food recipes. Some of
them are focused on baby led weaning, and some are open to purees. I am a middle ground kind of mama that likes to try it all. So, Caroline get’s table food as baby led weaning suggests, but I spoon feed it for now because the mess would be ridiculous and Caroline would hardly be getting any food if she was trying to feed herself. We’ll get there…but not yet. I do purees, I do bite sized food, I do fresh, but not organic. So, like I said, I’m a middle ground mama.
In these groups people post recipes, they ask questions and get/give advice. The discussions are always so focused on making sure everything is organic, nitrate free, no salt, and on and on. One poor lady asked if it was ok to feed beans from a can as a source of protein. She was practically attacked with remarks about the sodium content and that she should just make her own because “it’s so easy and why wouldn’t you”. “Obviously”, they all said “it would be such a bad choice to use canned”. I don’t post on these forums…I’m a member simply to steal some recipes here and there that intrigue me. I find it gets a bit ridiculous with all the perfectionist mamas out there acting like the rest of us are horrible for opening a can of veggies to give to our child. The horror!
I get that we need to be more health conscious when we are making choices for our children, our babies. Maybe in our adult lives we have gotten a bit off track and need to cook more than we currently do, and eat more fruits and veggies. We need to get back to being balanced. That’s great, and when we do our meal planning now, we are taking that into consideration since Caroline is joining us at the table and eating our food. But, come on…is canned corn really that unhealthy? Do we have to make people feel bad for feeding perfectly fine vegetables to their kids? NO!
I was so relieved yesterday when I saw a post about a mom feeding her kid McDonalds chicken nuggets. Now, I’m not a McDonalds fan even for myself, so this won’t be the road I take, but it is not the end of the world. She posted something to the effect of “please don’t judge, I just didn’t have time today to buy and make something perfectly healthy”. The posts that followed were like a breath of fresh air. There were all sorts of moms that replied saying “thank you so much for posting this, I was beginning to feel like a failure”.
It happened to be the same day that my husband and I had pizza rolls for a snack (and yes fed some to Caroline- she loved them), and we went out to have ice cream (and yes fed some to Caroline- she also loved the ice cream). Probably not our finest moments as parents…but you know what? We will always remember that day. The smile on Caroline’s face when she tried the ice cream, and how she wanted to devour our pizza rolls. It was laughable, and will be such a great memory.
Are we teaching Caroline to have horrible eating habits? No. She get’s plenty of veggies, fruits, proteins, etc.
Is Caroline going to be overweight because of the occasional ice cream, or the fresh veggies that happen to not be organic, or the hot dogs that she eats one day that have nitrates in them, or the salt that comes from a can of beans? No. She’ll be just fine because we will teach her to be balanced and eat a variety of foods.
Will she live on McDonalds? Hell no. But the occasional stop at a fast food restaurant is no big deal.
Maybe these perfectionist moms really exist…that’s great, there’s nothing wrong with it, but if it’s just a façade…let’s just be real. I highly doubt that the hundreds of moms that post on these facebook forums are as perfect as they seem to claim, while they bash other’s for feeding perfectly fine food. Mom’s of facebook, let’s be real. Let’s not forget that just because you can hide behind a computer screen and project a perfect image, that no one likes the fake you… just be the real you. And if the real you is really as great as you say- awesome. But don’t judge the other mamas, please. Don’t make them feel bad about a can of corn. Not everyone has access to fresh corn on a daily basis, or the funds to buy it. It’s better than the pizza rolls and ice cream I gave my child!