Dahlia Dajani is wonderful and devoted mother to beautiful Lulu


what is normal?

Normal is a setting on the washing machine cycle. Thatís it. Everyone has his or her own version of what ďnormalĒ means. My normal is that I have a family of 3 children; my eldest is a beautiful girl with cerebral palsy, which in a nutshell means she CAN eat, talk, laugh, play games, listen to music and generally boss everyone around.

Letís talk about the eating part, thatís always been a struggle for Lulu, she was born very prematurely at just 23 weeks, so she started life eating through an NG (nasogastric) tube. After about 2 years of trying every technique, spoon, cup, plate, speech therapy, you name itÖshe was off the NG tube and eating! This was a huge achievement as we dodged the dreaded gastrostomyÖonly just. We realized she liked to eat crunchy foods, and then we realized she likes strong tastes like curry! Slowly but surely she started having a repertoire of things that she enjoys to eat. She still is very underweight, but she doesnít belong on those charts, she just does things in her way on her terms, and Iím fine with that. Typically she loves to eat croissants with lots of nutella, rice with any meat but she loves fish most of all and lots of ice cream and popcorn will make Lulu a very very happy girl. Itís not the healthiest diet, but itís what Iíve found to work best for her, if sheís happy then Iím happy.

'They say you have to try something 17 times before you can really say I donít like it!'Dahlia Dajani

We each have our own challenges with feeding whether your child has special needs or not. The key is persistence. They say you have to try something 17 times before you can really say I donít like it! Thatís what I keep telling my children. The feeding part can be so stressful sometimes, but other times when we are all sitting around the table on a Sunday eating lunch together, that just makes it all worth while.