19th Feb 2019
The amniocentesis results are in.
H was the one to take the call. I had already pictured his face full of joy telling me, ‘everything’s fine!’ I knew I would walk in through the front door and he wouldn’t be able to contain the relief.
That didn’t happen.
I walked through the front door. Sore. Tired. Pregnant. And H looked at me with eyes of compassion and sadness, “We need to talk. They called.”
We were told one of the twins, our boy, has Down’s syndrome. My heart felt like it collapsed. This wasn’t what I wanted. I had held so strongly to a hope that it wouldn’t be – but I think deep inside I knew God had been preparing me for this point. A meteor had landed in my perfect world of hopes and dreams.
Grief overwhelmed me. I found myself grappling with thoughts no mother should have.
I wish it was the girl twin instead, I already have two of those
I wanted a boy – but now I’m getting half a boy
Maybe miscarriage from the amniocentesis wouldn’t be so bad.
I called my sister and we cried. She encouraged. Always with the right words.
“I don’t know what to say. It is not hopeless as it feels. It is going to be okay. You are going to have two beautiful twin children and be a rocking mum. Never lose hope of the miracle of life and what God can do. Screw any stigma or fear. You will blossom and he will blossom.”
There was no ‘sorry’, no attempt to console me with ‘they’re really happy people’. She gave me what I needed. Immediate acceptance and love for the two beautiful lives I was growing, and a deep belief that I had this, I could do it.
20th Feb 2019
I struggled for a day to tell other people, I was scared of how I would react to their reactions. I went to work and barely stayed upright, by lunchtime I went home. Though a hope glimmered above the rim of the crater, I was still in that crater and didn’t know how to get out.
I bought lunch and sat at looking out at the deep Southern Ocean imagining how far I could swim out into the water before drowning. I imagined all three of our souls drifting up to heaven and the babies asking me why I wouldn’t let them live. I wasn’t suicidal. I don’t know why I thought that.
I dreaded sharing the news with the in-laws, grandad, he had often talked about us having a boy. I imagined I would be a disappointment.
I Sobbed some more.
We saw the doctor- he was late – when he arrived he happily said he had just delivered twins! I wasn’t happy, it felt like a punch in the gut, I smiled weakly. I had twins. This fact, this once exciting special thing felt so overshadowed now. I bet those twins had been perfect. In a flash I imagined the delivery room, the excitement of two babies – would I even still get that? Would he be just has elated after delivering my babies?
Again, somewhere on the rim of this crater of loss that had caved within me I saw hope in the stories of other parents. Parents who claimed Down syndrome was such a beautiful gift to their family – that they wouldn’t change it for the world. I wasn’t there yet.
That night I messaged the community of faith who were praying for me. Something happened over night and peace began to seep back into my heart.
21st Feb 2019
I’ve woken up stronger. A greater determination to find joy again. I tread gently with my heart, there is still a reluctance to embrace or imagine a good future.
He is still the God of miracles, but that belief takes a bold faith.
“Bold faith stands on the shoulders of quiet trust.” – Bill Johnson
I can’t see our future and there’s no point trying. I can only today trust in the love of Jesus. I feel myself crawling, grasping reaching the sides of this crater and looking up. I feel myself standing in the tension of mystery and bit by bit building my trust in God’s words. I say yes to him and place another brick.
He knows what to do with my disappointment. He knows what to do with my pain. And as my emotions swing like a pendulum for the moment I carry hope.
So I ask, “Lord who do you want me to know you as this season? What should I do?”
Thank you to the amazing people who have selflessly sought God for us, prayed over us, loved us.
Please don’t feel sorry for us.
Do download and read the following booklet: Your loved one is having a baby with down syndrome
Do know, I believe God can alter DNA, Chromosomes and I have certainly asked him to and still in quiet trust I will place my hope in his goodness.