When Peanut came into our lives we were fully aware of her diagnosis. We had the option to say no. We had the option to say Down Syndrome was not for us…and no one would judge or really even know. Truthfully, a few other families before us said no. Thank goodness they did…because if not we wouldn’t have had the option to say yes.
I’ve recently spoken to a couple of mamas who were struggling with their prenatal diagnoses. They know when their sweet baby is born, they will face a multitude of issues. They have doctors and health care providers constantly asking if they would like to terminate the pregnancy or set up an adoption. As if this child is less worthy of love and life because of the Down Syndrome. Instead of these mama’s receiving support from their doctors, they are pressured into decisions they are not prepared to make.
You see, when a new family receives a diagnoses of any kind, especially Down Syndrome, they need to first grieve the loss of the child they had prepared for. This is extremely common. Some new families struggle bonding with their children right away, some cant seem to see past the diagnoses, and some cry for days on end. All of these reactions are completely normal. No one wants their child to be “different” in the world. We never want them to have to see specialist after specialist, prepare for surgery at young ages, work harder than anyone to just achieve simple milestones. The idea of having a special needs child is terrifying, but let me tell you, the joy overcomes the fear!
I want to speak to the new mama’s out there. I know right now you are scared. You are feeling alone, secluded from your friends and family, you feel lost and worried that you will fail your child. You are confused about the services your child needs, scared your mess something up and will affect them forever. You are terrified of the future, not just theirs…but what will yours be now? You are scared that no one will love and accept your baby as much as you do! I know you are feeling a world win of these and more, because I have felt the same. But I want to tell you, you are not alone! You have a community of mamas at your finger tips. They will cheer with you at each new milestone, they will worry when doctors apts come up, they will cry surgery is needed. They will pray and love your child almost as deeply as you do. They will send you encouragement and love, because no one else in the world understands what your facing as much as they do. You are not alone! Your child will grow and become a star in the world. A special piece of humanity that God just had bigger plans for. You will experience more love and excitement than you ever have faced. You will learn to see joy in the smallest achievements and feel love when words cannot be spoken. Your child will make you stronger than you ever realized you were and help you love even deeper.
I want to leave you with this poem. Its kinda been passed around the DS Community a bit. But it is there perfect example of what it is like to be in this special club. Hold your head up high mama! God pick you out of everyone to raise this special angel. Be proud of this honor! Not many people get to join our club 🙂