For the past several months Apollo has watched with interest as a new Taco Bell has been under construction. We have to drive by it every time we head into town and he has asked countless questions (including what kind of food they serve). Back in December I told him once the Taco Bell was open I would take him there to eat.
Naturally, it opened in January, when I was committed to eating no sugar. I knew the probability was high that the food contained sugar, so told Apollo we would have to wait until February. He has practically been counting the days until January was passed so I could finally take him to Taco Bell.
Yesterday was the big day. I headed out with Tilly, Enoch and Apollo for our big adventure. I had no idea what Apollo might eat there, so I ordered one crunchy and one soft taco. After we ordered and headed to the table he began crying. “What’s wrong?” I asked.
“Why didn’t you give me the food I ordered?” he cried.
Poor kid. He has very limited experience with eating out. He had no idea we needed to order and then wait. Once he realized the food was coming and he only needed wait for it to be fixed, he was happy again.
Once he heard our number called, he took off running to “help” Enoch bring us our food.
What I didn’t realize when I ordered was I had made a major tacticle error. There was cheese. In Apollo’s taco.
I painstakingly picked each and every shred of cheese out of Apollo’s taco. Then he was ready to try it.
I think these photos pretty much speak for themselves. He loved the taco. He at every. single. bite.
Then I bought him another taco, this time asking Tilly to order it with “no cheese”. Apollo was thrilled.
“They make them with no cheese?” he asked in shock.
For you buddy, they’ll hold the cheese.
Checking the Taco Bell website I discovered a crunchy taco has about 170 calories. That means Apollo consumed 340 calories, plus whatever was in the chips. Whoo-hoo! That’s a win in our house.
Introducing Apollo to new foods, enticing him to try them, this is quite literally therapy for Apollo. I can remember back in the summer of 2012, he had just had his g-tube placed, and we were desperate to keep him eating orally. A small piece of chocolate. A potato chip. These were all small (and big) victories. Sometime in 2013, we got him eating Chinese food. He loves lo mein and sesame chicken.
Apollo spent four or five months in 2013 going to group feeding therapy. We had some small successes, but in the end, I decided watching the other kids be fearful and leery of food was doing more harm than good, and we stopped going. Apollo was the youngest in the class and I wanted him to have more positive role models. This was no fault of the therapy, I just didn’t feel like it was the place for him.
So we work at home. We got him to drink juice in 2013. His dietician at Children’s didn’t want him drinking water (his sole beverage at that time). “Anything has more calories than water” she told us. So many foods he now consumes have stories behind them. Nothing has ever been easy with Apollo, even the most simple of things, such as feeding him.
So there you have it. We can now add Taco Bell tacos to the list of food Apollo eats.
December 16, 2014 Apollo saw his doctor and we discussed his weight. He has been eating so much since getting his tonsils removed, I was eager to talk about weaning him off of his g-tube feedings. At that point he was less than a pound away from when the doctor would “consider his growth a steady, upward swing” and not just a temporary spike. Once he hit that target weight, our doctor would be confident he growing and gaining well and we could talk about (very slowly) weaning at that point.
Apollo is now two pounds less than he was at that visit six weeks ago.
So it’s back to the roller coaster that we never really left.