Saturday, March 3, 2012

"soy" and "cow" right next to each other

Alright, it is a strange headline but do you know what I mean? On the weekend I like to put the different choices on our lazy Susan in the middle of the dinning table. For some reason it is just adds a little bit of more fun instead of the usual "please pass". In any case,  all of us like to eat yoghurt.  The girls however - of course - eat Soy Vanilla Yoghurt, while Ron and I eat Greek Yoghurt.  So, I put the two choices right next to each other. There is no question, and both girls know exactly that the "cow"is off limits for them.

You, know when our kids were much smaller this would have been unimaginable for us.  I cringed just at the thought of having "unsafe" foods in the fridge.  But what good does it do for the children?  Our friends in South Tyrol, Italy -who also have two children with Classic Galactosemia - told me.  Alena and Mia Rose was 3 and Mia Rose 18 months at the time. Karin told me "if they do not learn at home which foods are safe, where will they learn?" And she was so right.  I will never forget how their breakfast table included soy and cow yoghurt, soy and cow milk, unsafe Nutella and safe chocolate spread, butter and vegan butter - I cringed and was nervous.  But then I saw how their children - 10 and 8 at the time - chose the foods that are safe for them.  Never even questioning an item which they could not have.

This was the turning point for me, and I think both of us.  From that point on when going out for dinner, we each order foods for us without worrying, and of course always sure that the food for the girls is "safe". OK - as a matter of full disclosure I had never before ordered "unsafe" food in a restaurant when the girls came along. Since that time our fridge includes "cow" and soy choices, our table includes it, and this is how the girls started to learn about their diet.  They know that there are many foods that they cannot eat - well, but there are still many foods that are safe.  The key which they have both learned is that they always need to recognize whether or not the item is safe.

I am positive that without that approach they would not be as understanding of their diet.


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