There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about the day my son was diagnosed with Down Syndrome and then with Congenital Heart Defect. My whole world changed that day. When a woman gets pregnant they run all these test to make sure there is nothing concerning with the baby. They also check to see if there are any chromosome defects, or if there is an extra chromosome. Like most women I got this test done. I was told again like most women that there was nothing concerning in my test. Well, turns out they were a little off.

Just like all moms to be, I was looking forward to meeting my little man. I was dreaming of what he would look like. How was he going to interact with his two older brothers. I dreamed of what his life would be like. Getting the news changed that for me. All of a sudden I feared his every day. I was nervous for his future. I was scared for what his life would be like. I feel terrible that this was my first thought. Now, I know the truth. I know what a gift he truly is and not something to fear or be nervous over.

He has bought more love and joy to our lives that I could have ever imagined. This is not for everyone but something needs to be said about a child with Downs Syndrome or CHD. They are the bravest, strongest most loving children in the world. In the beginning it is scary because there are so many unknowns. It’s okay to be scared but once you get a handle on what doctor’s to see and what treatment routes you’re going to take, the rest is smooth sailing. That is YOUR baby. There is no one more perfect than your baby. He needs a little more attention and a little extra loving but how can that be a negative thing. He has taught my older boys patience and understanding. They have learned to be accepting of all kinds of people no matter their abilities. They have learned to be kind to those who may be different from them.

As a mother you want the best for your child. You don’t want to see them hurt or struggle. It kills me to see him struggle at times but when he gets it, it is a time to celebrate. When he held his head up for the first time, when he finally developed tears , when he finally learned to suck from his bottle, I felt a burst of joy like no other. The little things become huge and celebratory. My family celebrates everyday. We enjoy every moment together because of him. He’s taught us to love a littler harder, to rejoice in the moment, and to live as if tomorrow were not promised. He was our gift not burden.

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