With just weeks (2 or 3?!) to spare, we are so excited to announce that we are expecting a new French baby!
Babies arrive when they are meant too, and this year that meant being pregnant nearly the whole time that Matt was out of work. We spent a lot of time together as a family, and have welcomed autumn with Matt's new job.
Being 37, we opted to meet with Maternal Fetal Medicine (REALLY I just wanted to see the 4D ultrasound!). We were rather stunned to learn in May that our baby had several markers for Down Syndrome. heart spot and intestinal spot and the whopper, an absent nasal bone at 13.5 weeks- reported in the Lancet as being a significant marker for Down Syndrome and a nearly diagnostic sign of a chromosomal abnormality.
Needless to say, it was quite alarming, and worrisome too. However, we opted out of going through with a diagnostic amnio- after getting philosophical- and prepared ourselves for some long and hard months of waiting it out. We read lots of books about Down Syndrome, and are so ready and excited to meet our baby who, for the last five months has been carrying an impressive 1 in 2 risk of DS. Since our first son Max was a "typical" infant, we find ourselves preparing for the other 50%, so that we are educated enough to give our baby absolutely the best care whatever the outcome.
As the last few months of the pregnancy have unrolled themselves - through the heat of summer (the hottest summer ever on record), an exhaustive job search (500 people applied for my husbands training class which had openings for only 14), a car that broke down, health issues on my part, and lots of other stresses, our baby has fallen into the 19nth percentile for growth with legs now measuring 2 or 3 weeks behind- yet another sign of this T21 chromosomal abnormality.
As we prepare for the birth of our sweet little love, I hunt for tiny little pants, clean the house, thank God for our house, get together with kind and caring friends, play trains, play doh, co-op together at Max's preschool, sleep, nap, roll myself in and out of the car, eat lots of high protein Chobani yogurt, occasionally have a panic attack, thank God we live 5 minutes from a Level 3 NICU, do kick counts every two hours, and register for things like The Nap Nanny, the crawl ball, the Crib Wedge, tummy time mats, and a swing that really reclines. I've packed my hospital bag with copies of the Down Syndrome New Parents Guide, the tiniest clothes I could find (for boys and girls, since we don't know!!!), a big brother shirt for Max from etsy, an elegant robe for me (thank you Mom!), toys for Max to play with, phone numbers, and soft pillows and an extra blanket.
I will never ever for the REST OF MY LIFE! forget the trials and tribulations of this last year. But now a new life is about to arrive! Someone extra special...right when we need something extra special to warm our hearts. As each day comes to a tired close, and we become nearer and nearer to our planned delivery date- I am reminded of the preciousness that's about to be. When our little world will stand still in absolute awe and amazement once again. Nothing could be more bittersweet.