It was frustrating and infuriating and I became so tired of the battle.
And you know, parenting is all about picking your battles. I got to the point that I didn't want this one anymore. I also realized that part of the problem is that Port still isn't really on our schedule when it comes to eating. I can regulate breakfast and lunch, but he was still hungry every night around 5PM. Unfortunately, that is right when I am either cleaning the kitchen or just starting dinner; there is no way that I could have dinner ready that early. And it doesn't make sense to do that as a family - Hubby is never home from work that early.
I even give the boys a big snack when Kiddo gets home from school. It still didn't change the fact that Port is ready to eat at 5 every day. And if I don't let him eat anything at 5 in the hopes that it will make him really hungry when supper is ready, it always backfires on me. Either he bugs me and cries and stays underfoot the whole time I am making dinner, or he works himself into a tizzy by the time dinner is ready.
So, a couple of months ago I stopped trying to conform him to our schedule. I feed him what he wants at 5 (usually a hot dog, cheese, sandwhich or nuggets) and then at dinner time I give him vegetables and fruit that I know he will eat. Many times it is nothing more than a banana and some carrots or grapes, and some times it is a banana, some carrots and grapes. haha.
*cough* I said he was a picky eater. No seriously though, he will also eat apples and pears, raisins, cranberries, cherries, strawberries, and blueberries. Occasionally I will give him some beans if we are having them, or chicken and okra when that is what's for dinner.
And let me tell you, it's not perfect or ideal, but it is sooooo much better! He doesn't always stay at the table, but he does sit long enough to eat something. And I don't have to worry so much about wasting the food anymore. I wish he would try more foods and be more open to tasting stuff, but right now I don't have enough energy to fight him on it. Later on, when he is older and better at communicating, I will try to get him to taste new things.
Until then, I am stocking up on bananas every week.