When we first found out Eslea had down syndrome, I just wanted to be left alone. I didn't want to talk to other mothers or meet other babies.
I was scared. I was scared of what I'd see.
I was scared of the future that was laid before me.
When I was finally ready, I met so many new people. Through local contacts, blogging and networking friends, I have met the most extraordinary families. Families that adore each of our children...brothers...sisters..cousins..that carry that extra chromosome.
Amazingly though, there were a few people Jason and I knew before having Eslea that also had a child with down syndrome. These were people we knew in our past and played with as childhood friends. Recently, and even more amazing, another baby has joined our "club" and again, it's someone we knew previously.
What is the point of this you ask?...I'm getting there.
Having a child with designer genes is like being in a club. A very exclusive club with proud members that welcome new members with open arms. Most often when the new members arrive, they are people we have yet to met. Another family joined to us through an extra chromosome.
Yet, occasionally, new members arrive in the form of someone we already know. Maybe someone we have known for years. These new members...the one's already in our lives however small a role, these are the ones we so strongly want to reach out to.
But we know the early weeks are the hardest. Remember those days? Those weeks?
Doubt. Anxiety. Fear. Ignorance. All overtaking us.
What do you say? If you could talk to your past self at those moments...what words would you chose?
I would do it differently. I would get plugged in sooner and meet another child with DS as soon as possible.
I would battle the IGNORANCE head on. I would see for myself the truth and capabilities.
I hope to offer that to others. Of course, Eslea would be my IGNORANCE fighter. If those parents could just meet her. Hold her. Listen to her laugh. Watch her try to crawl for toys. Smell her. Play games with her.
Views would change. Ignorance, doubt, fear, anxiety..they diminish around that baby.
I swear she has magic powers.
In the beginning, I was so scared of how "different" she would be, that now I am amazed by exactly how "typical" she really is. She is typical. She is different. She sports designer genes. She is perfect.
Please do let me know the wisdom you would share with your former self from those early days. It's important. I have new parents to meet and I want to do right by you all.
Don't forget to read the post about Pharmacology because I want your input. Also, I still need guest bloggers for the new site. For those that have already responded, thank you. Look for an email from me soon!