I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. My life is an emotional roller coaster. I’m sure this is true of any pregnant woman. The list of reasons goes on and on. Sometimes I’ll forget that I’m having a girl and it HITS me again that pretty soon my house will be filled to the brim with sparkly-pink-foofoo-dresses and bows that are three times the size of her head. And I cry out of happiness. And I cry out of sadness for not having a boy. And then I level out and I go on with my day.
Then I start to imagine what my daughter will look like. Will she have my eyes? Or curly, blonde hair like her father? Maybe she’ll throw us for another loop and arrive with a beautiful red mane?! I could make myself crazy thinking of all the possibilities. This usually fades into the all the possible characteristics of Down syndrome that she’ll show. And I cry. Not out of happiness, but not out of sadness either.
It’s hard to explain. It’s like a release. Like all of these emotions get bottled up and bounced around until they come out as one big, unexplainable, cry-fest. I feel so out of control during these times. Earlier this week, it hit while we were in the middle of grocery shopping. I couldn’t wait to get home so I could let it all out.
I’ve been told many times that it’s okay to grieve after finding out your baby has Down syndrome. One woman said that she cried for the first 3 months straight. This makes me feel a lot less guilty. It helps to know that I’m not the only one and it’s a reason why I am wanting to share my thoughts as we continue this journey. I am not proud of my very first thoughts after hearing the news. I doubted myself on every level.
Will I love her?
Was this my fault?
There is no way I’m going to get through this.
I can’t get through this.
I can’t say that I just “snapped out of it” either. I still visit that place frequently. After having a month to cope with the probability, and then the reality, of Down syndrome, I feel like I’m in a healthy spot. Not a great one, but a normal one and its getting a little bit better everyday.
It’s kind of comical to see Jacob’s reaction to my hormonal outbursts. He’s getting used to them and has started taking a more sensitive approach than he once did. He’ll say, “Why are you crying? What’s making you sad?” When I don’t have the words to tell him, he will either let me have my time to be upset or he’ll distract me with whatever comes to his mind first. It almost always works 🙂 I am incredibly lucky to have him by my side.
And that’s exactly where he’ll be next week, when we go to see Baby Girl again! They are going to take a very thorough look at all of her insides. On the check list:
✔️ her brain
✔️ her heart
✔️ her organs
Her heart will be the size of HALF of the top part of your pinky finger. (Yes, I looked down at mine too.) It’s amazing that they can look at something that tiny and examine it for irregularities. Not only is it tiny, it’s inside of my body! It makes me wonder what we’ll be capable of in a hundred years.
Fingers crossed that they don’t see a heart defect, but 50% of babies with Down syndrome have them so we are mentally prepared, just in case. From what our genetic counselor tells me, if she will be born with a defect, it is already there. Everything is already formed, it is just a matter of being able to see it. If she gets a clean bill of health after this ultrasound, we can breathe easier until the next one. Of course, the bigger she gets, the easier it will be to see any thing that looks amiss. Right now, next week’s appointment is the next milestone we need to reach. It’s all about taking it one day at a time.
Speaking of getting bigger, either Baby Girl is growing like crazy or I’m just worn down from working a full week again. I have had at least one appointment every week for the past month. I didn’t have any this week and I forget how long 40 hours can feel sometimes! All I can say is, T.G.I.F! Get me home and in bed!