Posted in Adoption on November 18, 2006|
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Food is an issue at our house in that we don’t have a typical diet. My daughter and I both have Celiac Disease, and we follow the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. This means no grains, sugar, or lactose.
I cook a lot. We eat a healthy variety of foods, and every meal includes at least two vegetables. Lily’s favorite snack is baked kale. Really.
Dawit comes from a background where he didn’t always have enough food. Most often, probably. I think that this experience is translating into his food-focus day to day. I hope that as he spends more time with us and realizes that meals are steady and available, this food-focus will lessen. When I say focus, I mean it is the main topic of conversation all day long. As we are eating lunch, for example, he’s asking about a snack. If I say “let’s go to the playground!” He’ll respond with “and then dinner?”
If Lily comes home from school and has a snack of cheese and apples and loves it, he feels that I should prepare a snack that he will enjoy equally. (peanut butter and honey on white bread) He refuses the apples and cheese, but then (I think) sees the situation as being treated unfairly. I also believe that we haven’t seen all of the real Dawit yet. He is still in “survival mode”–unsure that this situation is permanent. He is guarded and careful in his reactions.
It’s not a typical toddler food issue. He spent 3.5 years in circumstances that we don’t fully understand, but we can be sure that there wasn’t enough food. Now he’s doing his best to fit into an established family and to feel that he’s getting equal treatment to his new sister. Sure, he is bound to have preferences like the rest of us, but it is more layered than just how the food tastes.
I prepare a lot of “special” food for Lily. Maybe he views this as unfair. I don’t think he can understand that he is able to eat much, much more food than she can. Maybe I need to change some of the verbage surrounding food in our house.
If this is the biggest issue we have, I sure know that we’re doing great. And I trust that this will work itself out as long as we are aware of it, and open to working it out. This blog has been a great place for me to document our transition, and the food part has been significant.
At our local Ethiopian restaurant:
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