For my morning shift, we ate sausages and toast with Nutella and almond butter. Nothing too fancy or adventurous. Also, it was delicious.
When I came back for my night shift, her parents had made fish empanadas. Keeks was eating a hot dog. Her mother graciously offered me the empanadas (and a slice of delicious pie). I diplomatically said, "Cool," but I didn't commit to eating the fish.
After her parents left and I was trying to get her to stop running long enough to eat some hot dog, Keeks said, "I don't like fish."
"I don't like fish, either," I said.
"And that's okay, Kayla!"
I smiled at her enthusiastic acceptance of different tastes. "You're right." But would a real grown-up just stop right there? Fish and chips are alright. What if empanadas are alright? "But I'm going to try the empanadas."
There. Few people hold you accountable for your words like four-year-olds. Now I had to try them.
I put one on my plate, reminding myself that if I tried this I would have totally earned that delicious pie. Then I sat next to Keeks.
All that unknown grossness hidden in an inconspicuous pasty.
I broke off a piece and smelled it. Unsurprisingly, it smelled like fish. I held it out for Keeks to smell. "It smells gross," she confirmed. "You're gonna eat it?"
I sighed. "Yes. You should try new things. So I'm gonna eat it."
"Okay, Kayla. I'll count to five. No, ten."
"And then I have to eat it?"
She nodded. "One. Two. Three. Four. Five. Six." I put the fork up to my mouth and took a deep breath. "Seven. Eight. Nine. Ten, Kayla!"
I ate it. It was okay. It didn't have the texture of a slab of fish. It was lightly seasoned, which cut down on the grossness. Not as good as fish and chips, but better than most of the fish I've tried on this blog.
And I ate the whole thing!
"Good job, Kayla."
"Thanks, Keeks. You need to eat more hot dog."