Dear Mom who just got a Down Syndrome Diagnosis,
First, welcome to the biggest “family” I’ve ever been part of. We’re here, all of us, to help. Some are battle worn and weary, some are new and have fresh eyes, but all of us can offer you help on your journey. The Down syndrome community is expansive in their views and their approaches.
You likely heard your babe has an extra chromosome from a pediatrician, genetic counselor or your Obstetrician. I hope they were gentle. I hope they were positive. I hope they gave you up to date information. And I hope they listened to you. Maybe they gave you local contacts in the DS community, or maybe they only gave you medical information. I want you to know that both are valuable. It’s ok if you aren’t ready to meet other families yet. It’s ok if you immerse yourself in events like the Buddy Walk. This is your journey and its unique to you.
As you sit there looking at a profile in an ultrasound, or holding your bundle of joy please know that you hold the keys to everything they will need. Your love will shine through with each medical decision, each push for therapies, and each gentle cuddle you give.
It’s ok to be lost sometimes. It’s ok to not have all the answers. Sometimes you will be so overwhelmed that you can’t think about therapy, or surgery, or being brave. And that’s ok. Your baby doesn’t need for you to have all the answers. Or even to keep a brave face all the time. All your baby needs from you is love.
Whether you advocate loudly from the rooftops or quietly behind your keyboard, you will make a difference.
As you hold your baby, or rub your growing baby bump, please know that you are enough.
A mom a little further along on this path