I’ve been thinking hard on how to solve the dinner issue since I went full honest last night and told you all about. Including the gory deets about how I suck at parenting from 5 to 8:30 p.m. most nights. I thought hard. I thought long.
Not gonna lie, it took me a while.
Hail Satan I bought the brain hat.
I decided that the problem is…well, it’s complex and I can’t fix the whole thing. But I can fix one part of it, probably. If I try.
Don’t get too proud. I’m working on literally 73 minutes of sleep in the past twenty four hours.
But it was worth it.
Because I decided that if I can fix one shitty part of every shitty night, I was gonna make it dinner.
And I figured that the lowest common denominator is usually a good place to start.
For us, in this house, that’s cereal.
I mean, there are still rules. There are still Indiana Jones level booby traps. But as long as I remember to serve it in plain white bowls (not blue willow bowls, I mean… obviously) and if I don’t put milk in Harper’s and I don’t forget to put milk in June’s, then they’re more or less going to eat.
And they can’t claim they don’t like the cereal because it’s what they demand, literally every single time they claim to hate the dinner I invested time, money, energy I did not have, and foolish hope on.
So goddammit, we’ll eat cereal every damn night. And sooner or later they’ll be begging for some damn tacos again.
Did not expect it to work so fast.
“How many nights are we going to eat cereal for dinner,” Harper asked me, with the Margo Gru knowing look extraordinaire look all over her grill area.
“All of them,” I answered.
“I don’t want to have cereal every night,” she argued.
“I don’t want to cook dinner and then throw it in the garbage every night,” I countered.
“We’ll eat it.”
“I don’t want to play poker face trying to narrow down how many bites you’re going to take.”
“I want tacos again.”
“You gon’ eat ’em?”
I was using my Sammy L. Jackson face/voice combo, so she knew I was ser’ous.
“Not a chance in hell.”
She nodded and shoveled another tablespoon of dried rainbow flakes into her mouth hole. “Alright then.”
So that settles that.
It gets so old, you know? Every night the same argument and I feel like an asshole, arguing with a five year old. Which is exactly what I should feel like.
But Jeez Louise the sound of their harpy screetching gets my cortisol pumping hard and fast and out of control. I’m talking zero to sixty in fractions of a second. I can go the full transformation – Bruce Banner to Jolly Green – like in the time it takes to flash a gang sign.
A white, suburban, single mom gang sign.
Or pour a glass of wine.
I’m working on it.
Ughhhhhhh. I hate my primitive reptile brain sometimes.
Like all of them.
All of the times.
I mean, amygdalas, am I right?
Bool to the sheet.
I tell you what.