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Dear New Mamma of a Baby With Down Syndrome, I See You

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Dear new Mamma with an expectant or confirmed diagnosis of Down syndrome for her baby: I see you.

I see you feel as if you’ve been hit by a wall when your doctor delivers the news.

I see your heart sink and you wonder, why me?

I see you sit and overthink, research for hours on end.

I see you worry.

I see you cry and grieve for a baby you thought you had.

I see your guilt, for feeling the way that you feel.

I see you rub you belly, so in love, yet so distant, so scared.

I see you watch and look at others with Down syndrome, worried for what the future will bring to your child.

I see you smile when you feel those first kicks and rolls, but wonder, will my baby crawl? Walk? Talk?

I see you feeling lost, like you have walked one step forward and two steps back.

I see you hold it all together — I see bravery, love, kindness and hope.

I see a fierce woman; one who will protect her baby with all of her being.

I see you becoming the most wonderful, selfless mother you will be.

Let me tell you, your baby is no different.

Your perception of who you thought your baby was may be holding you back. And guess what, that is OK!

You can feel angry, hurt, sad, happy, guilty and confused.

I have felt those things, too.

I have ridden this roller coaster, it feels like it will never end and I see you riding it, too.

But soon, it will stop, you will get off, and you will begin a new ride, start a new journey.

And it will be amazing.

It will be more than you imagined, better than you hoped!

You will meet your baby for the first time and sigh a sense of relief.

“Why did I worry?” you may think.

You’ll feel love and passion.

You will stare and take in all of the new life you have created and be so completely blown away at how something as simple yet so very complicated as an extra chromosome can melt you into a complete pool of utter admiration.

I see you skip ahead in time, and focus on the, “Will he? Can she?”

Take a deep breathe, look down at those almond shaped eyes and cute button nose, be in the moment… this very moment, focus on what is here and now.

This time is precious.

I still worry, and you may too, but please listen close — don’t doubt your child’s ability, they will teach you more than you know.

They will show you strength and courage.

Resilience and pure joy.

You will be proud to call them yours.

This road is bumpy, but it is also smooth and it will be the trip of a lifetime.

Stay strong, keeping holding on, pushing forward. You will give your all because you are brave and bold!

You’ve got this, Mamma.

I see you.

A version of this story originally appeared on My T21 Journey.

Originally published: December 12, 2018
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