Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Healthy baby! Uncomfortable Mommy

Our baby has been given only a 1 in 600 chance of having Down's Syndrome which is better than the odds are at my age, so we are very thrilled! I had come to accept that I could and would raise a baby with disabilities but even still it's nice to know that I won't have that worry, or at least not through a Down's diagnosis.

I am so freaking UNCOMFORTABLE. It's impossible to bend as much as I need to and it's frustrating me to no end. Ugh!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Down's Syndrome and Me

A week ago Thurdsay, David told me that he received a call from our OB the night before. He didn't say Down's Syndrome at first. He only said that the fetal group who had read the ultrasound had concerns about the thickness of the baby's neck. He then told me the doctor wasn't worried. I asked him if she said what they looking for and he said-Down's Syndrome.

This sparked a malicious firestorm in my brain and I went to my pregnancy support and posted these two threads. I wanted to share them here rather than write a new one because pretty much every thought that has occurred to me since then has been covered in one of them or the other.

The first one is titled: Lovely Little Phone call

I crashed early last night. You know the whole mother of 3 thing who is pregnant with a 4th catches up with me from time to time. Since we have an internet phone service that sometimes gets wanky, our doctor's offices uses my husbands work cell to get in touch with us.

Well, as luck would have it. He got a phone call last night at 9 pm from my doctor who had my ultrasound results in front of her. Looks like we need another peek because the baby's neck is borderline thickness for Down's and the pics of hands and feet weren't clear enough either.

I would just like to say that I can now identify with all those mothers out there who got served an extra helping of worry with the "big" ultrasound.

I would also like to say that although I am not in fits of panic and am very optimistic, I am still not at all happy with the universe this morning, as I was served this lovely news along with my morning orange juice.

So please add me to your prayer list if you have the room. I go for an ultrasound tomorrow probably. I am waiting on the confirmation call.

I didn't have the quad screening, so I am sure I will be getting some needle poking if they are still unhappy with the looks of the baby, and probably an amnio which is something I can not even imagine going through...


And here is the second-Emotions were pretty much out of control at this point.

It's titled- Suffering in Silence

This just really has not been my week. It was Thursday morning when I learned that my baby's measurements were off at the ultrasound. He or she may be at risk for Down's. I shared this with the board and the support I received helped me get through the next couple of days. I am so thankful for that. I have also been in a huge amount of pain and discomfort due to a thrombosed and actively bleeding hemorrhoid. This is the second time this pregnancy and I dealt with one the last time too. I am pretty sure no one in my real life wants to hear another word about my ass and I definitely am not in the sharing mood.

It's 1:24 am Sunday morning and I can not sleep a wink, so I decided to come here and share some of my deepest darkest thoughts and hope that somewhere someone can help lead me out of this really bad place I have come to find myself in. My husband has been asleep for hours. I have already spoken to him enough about the fears in my heart and I don't want to trouble him even more. God knows, with his work schedule plus our finances to worry about, he needs his rest.

I've visited site after site. Some made me cry, some inspired me, some literally tore my heart out, and others made me feel like a sleazy human being. I don't want to bother my extended family, what can they do or say. There is nothing we can do but wait. I already proclaimed that I would not dwell on this little blip on the roadmap, with a healthy birth as a destination, longer than absolutely necessary.

I know I will feel totally stupid for worrying when the results come back fine. That is not what keeps me up though. That is not what has me sitting here pouring my heart out when I really should be sleeping. The "what-if's" are the source of my internal agony.

What will I do if the baby does have Down's syndrome? I am almost 22 weeks and termination seems like a cruelty even to an avid pro-choicer like me. On the other hand, I just don't think I am strong enough to raise a child with the kinds of problems that I have been finding in my research.

Some siblings of down's children say they felt blessed, others say it ruined their childhoods because their parents were forever preoccupied and financially strapped. We are not rich people and some might say that having a fourth child in our circumstances was irresponsible. It probably was in a way but I selfishly yearned for one last child to raise.

Learning I was pregnant made me feel complete inside. I had the confidence that we would bring this child into our happy home and our family would be perfect. I am a half way intelligent woman, I should have realized that something could happen. Why do I walk through life with blinders on?

And now, I struggle all day long to keep a smile on my face for my other children. I care for them and hug them close and wonder at their normalcy. They are all so healthy and bright. I feel confused in my heart. I just don't know if I can expect the same things from the baby I carry.

Every time I think about the future, I get a twinge of genuine sadness that had been bordering on full blown depression. I feel like my plans are suspended, like my pregnancy is dangling on a thread out there in space somewhere. Like the baby inside of me is caught in some sort of ancient struggle for survival. I have stopped making plans for the baby and thinking of names. I have stopped shopping on my favorite sites and trying to even guess what sex he or she is. I don't want to get any more attached than I am in case the news is bad.

My screensaver is my ultrasound picture. My baby's image blown up to full screen size. There's a profile with a cute little nose, perhaps a down's nose, I have been comparing the pictures of ultrasounds of down's babies and mine looks similar but what can an untrained eye see. What exactly do they look for? How many milimeters is the difference between healthy and abnormal?

I love this tiny life growing inside of me and the more I worry the more I feel like I am mothering my baby. I feel more connected. I feel like if the powers that be know I am out here praying, hoping, and posting crazy random threads on the internet, and then crying myself to sleep at night that somehow there will be mercy for my unborn baby.

Once again please pray for me and my baby...we need you