Yes, I have no intention stopping my kid from eating that piece of pizza currently laying facedown in this parking lot turned festival area. I understand the looks, the ground looks rather disgusting to me too. I don’t WANT my kids to it ground food, but it happens…a lot. How far should we go back to find when my kids broke me of the conditioned reflex to stop them from eating off the ground?
I really did use to care, believe me. Tons of floor food has made its way to the trash instead of my kid’s mouths. From popsicles to cheerios, no dirty food would be consumed. So what changed? How did I go from caring about whether my kids ate food that fell on the floor or ground to this point where I simply have given up on it. It isn’t a money issue, my family is well enough off to replace the food. Sorta. Except for when its the fourth slice of mostly uneaten pizza being thrown to the ground much to the glee of my kid, that hurts the piggy bank.
The only thing I really stop my kids from eating is peanut butter, is that bad? Seriously, anything else is fair game. Before you saw me pick that piece of pizza up and give it a quick germs-be-gone shake I watched my kids try to eat wood chips. Yes, wood chips. The ones they lay down around trees. The ones laid down over there, yes those wood chips that look like someone kicked through them. That’s not even the first time I think I have watched my kids eat wood chips.
I once watched my kid shovel sand in his mouth at the beach, only to make a disgruntled face and start spitting. This was after telling him not to eat sand four hundred times. After cleaning his mouth out with my bottle of water, risking personal health (what if I had gotten dehydrated?) my son proceeded to sit down, shovel sand in his mouth and look disgruntled.
Let’s get down to it. Once you have a child you notice they will stick ANYTHING in their mouth. From a bottle in the recycling can to sand at the beach, kids wonder if they can eat everything. I see a cellphone a toddler sees a technological sandwich. It really can’t be stopped. Unless you plan to bubble wrap your child or place a protective cover over your child, they are going to stick some disgusting stuff in their mouth. The ground pizza, while disgusting, has about as much germs on it as the equipment at the park my kids always seem to need to lick before going down the slide. Except that pizza has cheesy goodness and I can pass it off as lunch.
Kids are disgusting little creatures who explore textures and tastes. There will come a point in my kids life where they will have a little brain blast and realize that pizza tastes a lot better without gravel toppings. At least I really hope so. My kids are over beach sand for the most part. We are working on not eating dirt and clearly wood chips are still a dietary supplement to them.
I have an exercise for all parents. Watch what your kid touches and puts in their mouth. Watch what they touch and then how they don’t wash their hands before inserting them into their mouths. Is facedown ground pizza really the worst thing a kid can eat? What ever happened to the five-second rule anyways?