Sunday, December 27, 2009

Ramblings when you don't know where, or with who, to ramble...

December 27, 2009- (21 weeks pregnant)

I used to journal... a lot..then there was Charles (who actually was a healthy relationship, and someone whom I didn't have to fill tear stained pages of journals about). Next, came my precious Christian, now 2 and a half years old, and who fills my days with that toddler energy that doesn't allow much time for journaling and self introspection. But now there will be baby-boy-yet-to-be-named (herein to be called "peanut") who I already need a source of journaling about...and since I'm Keeping-up-with-the-times-Mommy, I figured I'd try my hand at a blog.

The reason I need to blog about peanut can all be boiled down to one moment- the moment I call the "AFTER". Everything before it is the "BEFORE". The "AFTER" happened like this:
I was frantically collecting myself and Christian to get out the door for our morning workout, when I get a 'no caller id' phone call. I pick it up. A bubbly voice on the other end says, "This is Megan, calling from Dr. Jidali's office. We got the results of your amnio in and unfortunately, your baby has Down Syndrome."
..................................................Long pause for shock, grief, disbelief, irritation at the upbeat voice that had me falsely thinking, 'Must be good news or she wouldn't be so bubbly. And who the hell is Megan???' What I think I actually said was, "Ummmm..." Megan's follow up: "So, would you like to come in to the office or do you have any questions?" (This is one of those moments that you dream about re-doing with thick sarcasm.) But instead, I said, "I think I need to talk to my family. I'll call you back."
Hence, the AFTER. I actually look at things and dates and people and think, "Oh, that was from BEFORE."

My family is amazing. My friends are amazing. But we all know next to nothing about Down Syndrome. And I feel very alone. The numbers are something like 1 baby with Down Syndrome is born to approximately every 700-something births. That, to me, is not exactly common. When I was pregnant with Christian I didn't know what I was doing or how I would be as a Mom, but I passed dozens of other pregnant women every day and thought, "She probably doesn't know what she's doing either, and somehow we'll figure it out." The safety in numbers thing, I guess. Most days I'm fairly optimistic. I've heard some stories and talked to some other parents with a child with Down Syndrome (DS). They all talk about a specialness to their child they never dreamed of. All mention how challenging it is at times. I am having feelings and fears and hopes and thoughts every day and I'm not really sure who to talk to. The overall consensus is "that if anyone can do it, Jen, you can do it!" That is extremely comforting to think that my friends and family think that I will rise to the challenge. And I will...to the best of my ability. However, I need to ramble...Will he even look like us at all? Will he be sick with one condition or another all of the time? Will he be short? Will he beat odds? Will he be high functioning? Medium? Low? Will it matter to me? Will I...Will he...it never ends.

Sigh. It's been a little over 3 weeks since we got the news. I still have people to tell. The worst is when I tell someone or email someone and they either say nothing or don't respond. I know that they're probably thinking I need my space or that they'll say the wrong thing. I don't blame them at all.

Well, I do want to make sure I'm not throwing a pity party for one, because although I may feel that on occasion, I am also excited about our little peanut, feeling great in my pregnancy and generally optimistic that our little peanut will defy odds. So, that's my rambling for now and it feels pretty good to have an outlet. I'll ramble more soon...

6 comments:

The DuBois said...

Jen--You are an amazing and brave person! Thank you for sharing your thoughts in a blog. Being all the way on the east coast, it is hard to feel like we can "be there" for you. This will help us feel more connected--and, more importantly, it is an excellent outlet for you.

I can completely relate to the "before" and "after" that you describe. For me that hard time line has become a little softer--and I hope it will for you, too.

Congratulations on your first entry. Love to you, Charles, Christain, and peanut. Susan

lrmcnam said...

Who said you are not a writer? That is lovely. I got all choked up. I hope you use the blog in the same way you used journaling to yourself and allow yourself unedited honesty. Or maybe that is for even another venue.... I have written a few unsent e-mails myself to this ex or that in a time of crises. Not one of us who supports you in this situation is here to judge your fears, thoughts, concerns and very human emotions, we just listen with open hearts. My love for you is sitting on your shoulder loving peanut and Christian and Charles too. xo Laura

Heather said...

Jen,
Your thoughts so eloquently written brought me to tears. My heart goes out to you and simultaneously rejoices for you and the new life that you, Charles, and Christian will soon welcome into the world.
Love, Heather

Cally said...

Jen, It's been a pleasure getting to know you in Facebook. You are such a great mom, and you have a wonderful sense of humor. I've met lots of kids with Down Syndrome, volunteering at Andrea's school when I was young, and I'm sure you and Charles and Christian and peanut will do great. I'll be reading & listening to anything you want to share. *hugs all around* Cally

Tracey said...

Jennie,
I love that you have found an outlet for yourself! Your writing is so eloquent and it really touches my heart. I hope you know that my prayers and thoughts are always with you and your family. If there is anything I can do, any info I can provide, or just a listening ear, I hope you know that I am here! Sending you, Charles, Christian and the whole family my love. Miss you!

Katina Childs-Muller said...

Jen, Thinking of you everyday. As your special day gets closer, just wanted you to know that I am sending prayers and hugs and love. I know you are a very busy Mom, but if you have anytime this upcoming week, would love to have a play date with the boys. If not, no worries. Hope you are getting lost of uninterrupted sleep. (Dylan Kate is 7 months and I am just starting to get good sleep again)
Your writing is compelling and honest! Thanks for sharing!
Love,
Katina

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