Malaika's challenging life

Hello, my name is Shahida Sohail. I am a mother of three children, two with special needs. My son Shehyar is 19 and has a diagnosis of Autism and Epilepsy. My son's seizures are still not under control even with medications. He has fell multiple times down the stairs due to his seizure activity. We get scared each time he is in front of the stairs and continue to be afraid his seizures will cause yet another fall. He currently has back issues due to a recent fall and he is unable to stand straight.
My daughter Malaika is 14 and she was born deaf and blind due to complications at birth and she is severely developmentally delayed. She was diagnosed with scoliosis and it is so severe that she needs surgery within the next few months. This is a life threatening surgery and we are very scared but understand that she needs the surgery to be comfortable. Her spine is currently at a 45 degree angle. Malaika is always in pain and she cries out from this pain. Due to her constant pain she has resorted to self injurious behaviors. She hit herself so hard one time that she ruptured the blood vessel in her ear.She has been to multiple doctors in her short life and has had so much testing completed on her sight and hearing. I feel in my heart if she was able to obtain a cochlear implant it would assist her with being able to communicate. She had a difficult time when it came to eating. She attended public school and it was identified that she was not eating and the school was not making her eat due to the school not being able to feed her because she was scared to eat from anyone other than me or her father. Due to this she lost a significant amount of weight and her life was in danger. Her doctor identified that she needed a G tube. One was inserted and she has continually gained weight since that time. She also eats food with the assistance of myself or her father feeding her. She does not like her G tube and has pulled it out numerous times and it has been reinserted which causes her a lot of pain.
We are extremely worried about her upcoming surgery and recovery. We currently live in a two story house and her bedroom is on the second floor. My husband or myself carry her up and down the stairs on a daily basis. After her surgery we will no longer be able to do this. It would cause her significant pain and God forbid if one of us fell with her after her surgery.
We are in search of assistance with a home makeover to assist with her recovery after surgery and to be able to meet her needs.

She could benefit from a ceiling mounted lift chair,that would be able to assist with getting her into her walker to improve mobility .
We need to renovate our downstairs. 

We would like to convert our family room into her bedroom. We have half a bath downstairs and we would like to convert it into a full bathroom that she will be able to use to shower.
My husband and I own a small restaurant in the Richmond area and though it does pay our bills it does not provide enough income to renovate our home and we are desperately trying to help our daughter live a happy and healthy life.
Please assist me with helping my daughter Malaika have the life she deserves.


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Shahida Sohail 
Richmond, VA
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