I’ve chosen today to release my first post as it’s the anniversary of the eve of the scan we had that tried to flip our lives upside down. Up until this point my pregnancy had been progressing relatively well. They had discovered I had low levels of Papp-a, which is a pregnancy growth hormone, at my 12 week scan (I’ll talk more about Papp-a in another post sometime) and we’d been told I’d have some extra scans later in the pregnancy to monitor growth.
We went along to the scan at 20 weeks feeling very happy, especially as I’d been feeling lots of movement, we were excited to find out if Elisha was having a baby brother or sister!
Little did we know we were embarking on a journey that has been life changing yet remarkably ‘normal’ at the same time, filled with glimpses of sadness and despair but overwhelmed with joy and hope. Zephaniah is now 8 month old and has already taught me so much and opened my eyes to a different world.
Here is what I imagine he would have wanted me to know as I prepared for that scan.
It’s me, Zephaniah, the baby you dreamt about before you and daddy even got married, the little bean that you have felt jumping around for the past 4 weeks. You are going to see me tomorrow and at the moment I’m not very well, the doctors are going to tell you that I’m not going to survive, that I have lots of fluid around my heart, lungs and brain. They will ask you multiple times if you want to end my precious life before it’s even began, even insinuating that it would be the better outcome, but I know you would never do that.
Please don’t grieve for me and worry because I’m going to be fine, you are going to bring me home like you planned in about four months time.
I know that you will want to know everything you can about me so you will decide to have a test and on Friday you will get a phone call to tell you that there is a little bit more of me to love than the typical baby. I have an extra chromosome!
I know it’s going to come as a huge shock and you will have a million thoughts running around your mind. You will feel numb and cry and wonder why this is happening, but don’t be scared of me or my extra chromosome, everything will be okay and don’t be sad or sorry because this will be a happy journey.
Don’t read about all the things they say a person with down syndrome can’t do, they don’t know me and all the things I will achieve in my life.
Don’t read about all the terrifying medical problems that I could be born with because even though some of my friends will face those battles, thankfully I won’t.
Don’t listen to anyone that tells you I won’t be able to breastfeed because I will, I’ll do all the usual baby things that you have planned.
The test won’t show you how beautiful my eyes and smile will be, how chubby and squishy my cheeks will be, how excited I will get when I see you, dada or my big sister. It won’t tell you that I will love music and swimming, and food. It won’t tell you how much joy I will bring to people and how happy I will be.
Mama, what I want you to know is that I’m going to teach you so much.
About faith, God says ‘For I know the plans I have for you,plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future’. I am going to do so many wonderful things and make a difference in the world. I will have hopes and dream and ambitions that I will achieve.
About patience, I might take a little longer to do things sometimes but I’ll get there and you will feel so much joy and happiness when I do.
About acceptance and about celebrating everyone’s differences.
About love, and what perfect love looks like through the eyes of another child.
You are going to find and meet lots of others on a similar journey as us, some in real life and some online, some further down the path and some who are yet to even imagine that this will ever be their road to walk. A wonderful community of warrior mamas, all united in their love and determination for their own babies. They will cry with you and celebrate with you.
So don’t feel alone. A whole new world is about to open up to you.
I know the next few weeks are going to be tough for you mama, but hang in there and keep holding on to that faith you have and know that I’m safe in here and I can’t wait to see you.
Lots of love
Ps..when we are out and about together, no one will notice my extra chromosome because they’re too busy looking at my curls!
Pps..this won’t make much sense now but…eat your Christmas dinner before leaving for the hospital 😉