Friday, October 12, 2012

Holding Daniel for the First Time

During my pregnancy with Daniel – after finding out about Down syndrome – I was pretty apprehensive about almost everything.  One of the things that was right up there on the top of my list was holding him for the first time.  I desperately wanted to hold him and get the pregnancy over with.  But I was worried that his birth would be a completely different experience from my other kids’ births.  I worried that I wouldn’t enjoy his birth – that Down syndrome would overshadow everything.  I worried about how I would feel the first time I saw him and the first time I held him.  I am ashamed to even admit to what I felt (especially now that I’m on this side of things), but I know what I was feeling was a normal part of processing everything that comes with an outcome different that what you were expecting.

Daniel’s birth was a different experience from my other kids’ births, but in a wonderfully positive and peaceful way.  I felt such a strong feeling of love and protection for him.  I was almost surprised at the depth and strength of the emotions I felt.  I was in “mama bear” mode without even being provoked.  There was never a moment of sadness, except for when he was away from me while they checked his heart.  I felt like I was coming apart at the seams when I had to let him out of my sight.  I could not put him down.  I couldn’t bear to.  He was such a beautiful, perfect, captivating little soul, and with his first breath I was completely hooked.

birth day

I am so thankful for the way things played out throughout my pregnancy.  Finding out about Down syndrome – without really finding out – at my 20-week ultrasound was, in retrospect, the most wonderful tender mercy my Heavenly Father could have given me.  I had time to get my ducks in a row and work out my emotions without having a diagnosis.  I got to come to terms with everything on my time.  And by the time Daniel arrived, I had no regrets.  I surely couldn’t have orchestrated anything as wonderful as that.

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