Friday, February 8, 2013

Happy Birthday and Happy Anniversary!!

So tomorrow is my 43rd birthday.  I have so much to be thankful for:  life, family, God, job, health, friends, shelter, and the list goes on....

I kind of think I may be going a bit over board on my birthday.. I mean it is only 43.  There is nothing special about the number.  Nothing at all...40 was fabulous and I am trying to convince my kids its only my 37th birthday.  However, a year ago my life totally changed....

A year to the day we received our definitive test that Chambers was going to have Down Syndrome. I remember the weeks leading up like it was yesterday.  I remember my doctor calling me and telling me my results came back with positives signs that there was either Trisomy 21 or Trisomy 18 in my possible future.  I remember sitting in the stall in Gold's Gym and sobbing to my friend Jinda.  She  in her ever calming way told me everything was going to be ok.  I believed her and knew that I could handle what ever was going to happen.

Well the week went on..we visited UAB.  We met with the genetic counselor and she read our results.  One in two chances. Yep, one in two for T21. I think Ingram and I looked at each other in disbelief.  We chuckled and decided the only way to know what to go on with the many tests.  The ultrasound was first. Nothing showed.  The only thing they knew was that we would have a very active baby.  The next step..yes an amnio.  Try #1 --it did not take.  What??  Yes I said that right--the needle,  the pain I had to endure that again??

So we waited three weeks until my membranes we ready.  The test was done..and then we had to wait. We waited seven to ten longs days for my results to come back. The Mercedes Marathon was taking up a lot of my time.  The volunteering for the Bell Center was helping. The call came and the drama started.  I pulled over on the side of the road.  I put Ingram in on the call.  The counselor spoke and I hardly listened.  All I could here was positive for Trisomy 21.  Positive for Trisomy 21.  Really did she just say that?  I couldn't breathe.  I cried and I cried and I cried.  I thought my life was over.

That weekend was one of the hardest weekends of my life.  I was put in front of many families that had experienced this same thing.  I was put in front of many children with Downs Syndrome.  I could not see the light.  I could not see the hope.  I could not see the future.  All I wanted to do was cry.  That is what I did. For three long days I cried.  I cried at commercials. I cried when people hugged me.  I cried when my husband breathed.  I could not get a hold of what was happening to us.  To me.  To my children.  How was I going to turn this around?

My turning point during the weekend was my friend Ruth and her simple wisdom.  I mentioned this before but we can't see the future with any child so why should this growing child inside my belly be any different.  From that point on, I knew somehow it was all going to be ok. I knew that this was going to change us and this was going to make everyone better.

It is amazing to go through a year and look back on your feelings and emotions.  I knew that it was not going to be real until she was here.  I couldn't imagine what it was going to be like.  Was it going to take away from my children--not it has only made it easier.  Was it going to put a strain on Ingram and me--well every relationship needs work--but it has made us better--most of the time!  I can't believe my fears a year ago--do I still have them--yes some of them.  But mostly I know that it is all going to be ok.  I know that when I hold that wonderful child I feel a sense of love that I have never felt.  I know that I live in a place where I have so much support its unreal.  

I think back on the people that we have met and are going to meet.  It overwhelms me with love.  I love my new club and would not trade it for the world.  My daughter is a true reason to make everything better.  She has brought grown men to tears because there is just something about her.  

So as I look back on the anniversary of sorts--I take a deep breath.  I look around and take it all in.  It went by very fast.  It was something that was a shock at first--but such a blessing now.  I am not just saying that. I have no regrets. Most of the time I have no fears. I embrace my future with arms wide open.  Oh and I embrace my 43rd year well with arms sort of opening-lets just say my 37th redo year-they lets jump right in!!


May..Mother's Day!

June Shower

Large and in charge

Do it all over again!

Words of Wisdom

Sweet friends!

Can I get any bigger??

Gorgeous friends!

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