In the assessment last week, the Developmental Pediatrican verified with my wife that our daughter's skinny appearance is a result of the syndrome and related feeding issues. She said that she wanted to get that fact recorded in my daughter's medical records for our protection. This seemed kind of strange, but she explained. Sometimes neighbors or acquaintances unfamiliar with a child's health issues will call child and family serices out of concern that parents might be intentionally malnourishing a child.
That little fact stuck in the back of my mind as thought about our neighbors across the street. We don't know them all that well but they are always very kind to my daughter. Every time they see her, they offer her a popsicle or a cookie. In fact more than once they've sent us home with a whole box of cookies for her. I wonder what goes through their mind when they see my little girl. Do they think she's being starved by her parents?
If that's the case, my wife and I have probably even done some things to support that opinion. Last month our neighbors next door held a barbecue that we and several other neighbors attended. My little girl does very poorly with meat textures and eating in an unfamiliar environment. So my wife and I fed her a bunch of things she could handle before we went to the barbecue. When we arrived, my wife and I fixed food for ourselves and let our daughter go play with the other kids. The neighbors across the street were also there and one of them scooped my daughter up, took her inside and fixed her a plate of food and set her down with it encouraging her to eat. They probably figured we weren't going to feed her anything that night.
It's really pretty funny now that I think about it in context with what the doctor said. I'm actually very grateful for these neighbors and their genuine concern for my little girl. There are so many good people who look out for our special little child. I just hope their concern doesn't go too far and end up putting me behind bars for child abuse that never took place! ;-)