I hate to admit this but I still spoon feed the little man. There, I have said it.
As you reel back in horror - he is two and a half after all - let me explain. He is more than capable of lifting a spoon or fork to his lips and shovelling in the food, the thing is he just doesn't want to. He has no interest. I know a lot of tiddlers are very independent (and he is in so many other ways) but he likes someone else to do the hard work at meal times. And because if I plonk the food into his mouth, he ends up clearing a plate and I know he has had a good meal and got all the right nutrients a growing boy needs, it seems the better, okay the easier, option. It is also much less messy.
It isn't all food. He munches crisps, biscuits, sandwiches, Humzingers (fabulous dried fruit sticks if you haven't heard of them before) etc solo no problem. It's cereals at breakfast and main meals at dinner where he becomes the baby again.
But I know I must break the cycle. I can't pop round to his school every
lunchtime to spoon in whatever the dinner lady serves up as if he were royalty. He had a playmate over last week and while I was giving them lunch (she feeding herself, me surreptitiously poking savouries into his mouth so as to not ruin his street cred) she spotted what was going on and asked, quite reasonably, why I was feeding him. It was a bit embarrassing. I was made to feel red-faced by a not even three-year-old.
So I have decided to toughen up and tackle the problem. I will be patient and encouraging. We will try to have more dinners together despite finding his early mealtimes just that bit too early for us - I can find myself reaching for a bowl of cereal ravenous at 10pm if we do eat with him.
There's no hurry, no pressure to get it sorted which is nice so hopefully in our own time I will have my own little independent feeder at the dinner table. Now, if I can just sort the potty training...