The Darkest Days: The Amniocentesis Results are In {Down Syndrome Diagnosis}

IMG_3164

This is the sixth and final part of a series about finding out our unborn son has Down syndrome through an abnormal ultrasound and a Harmony blood test.  I wrote throughout the month and have kept every piece in tact so that it may help someone going through the same thing. Read part 1 here, Part 2 here, Part 3 here, Part 4 here and Part 5 here. Please keep in mind that these were my feelings at the time of receiving the news.

 

We have a clock on our wall that I love. A distant relative gave it to us as a wedding gift. I remember hearing it tick…tick…tick when I was home alone on my weekend (Thursday/Friday) while Andy was at work. I tried to keep myself busy. I volunteered, I did housework, I cooked…but when I got lonely with little to do, I would hear tick…tick…tick.

When you have a baby, life gets noisier. The quiet you once knew gets filled with baby cries, lullabies…and eventually the stomping of little feet and giggles that make you realize your purpose in life. I hadn’t heard that clock since Violet was born a year and a half ago. But in the last week of September, I heard it again and again tick…tick…tick.

After meeting the OB Specialist for the first time, we decided to go ahead with the amniocentesis. We had read some articles, including this one that made it seem as if the Harmony blood test was not as accurate as the makers claim. The specialist told us it would take 10-14 days to get the results back. The first few days of the waiting process were easy, some days were even joyful and then Monday came around…tick…tick…tick.

I tried to fill the time; my Mom, Violet and I went to lunch one day, I took Violet to a MOPS meeting another and I went thrift store shopping the next. I would even go for 5-minute periods where I’d forget that I was waiting on the biggest news of my life. But in the afternoons, when I knew the lunch break at the doctor’s office was over, it would hit me again. I’d hold my phone with sweaty palms and weak stomach and stare at the screen. Any time it made a noise, I felt like vomiting. I spent the afternoons thinking, “Just a few more hours and then I’m safe for the day”…tick…tick…tick.

The week of waiting was the most sickening experience of my life. 

I was completely caught off guard the first two rounds of bad news. This time, I thought it was best that I be constantly on-guard, prepared. Then Thursday came. I got a call from Andy around 4:00 saying that he was going to a Company Grade Officer meeting and would be home late. About 10 minutes later, he called back. I was in the middle of changing a diaper. Because it was so late in the day, it didn’t dawn on me that this was the call.

Andy said, “The doctor called with the results, he has Down syndrome.” I asked him if we had to go in to get the full report. The doctor said that it wasn’t necessary because it was “Garden variety Down syndrome.” What he meant by that was that our son has Trisomy 21 which is the most common type of Down Syndrome that is not passed down through genetics, but is a “bolt of lighting”, “a random act of nature” as he described it.

The clock stopped. I wasn’t threatened by the tick…tick…tick any more. The dreaded moment had passed. I hung up the phone, I finished changing Violet’s diaper and yelled to my mom in the other room “Results are in, he has Down Syndrome” as casually as if I was yelling “Hey, what do you want for dinner tonight?” I sat on the ground to play with Violet and my mom walked in the room. She put her arm around me, she squeezed me…and nothing. I had no reaction. No tears. No emotions. I felt numb.

If you’ve ever been in a car crash, you might not have felt pain immediately after colliding. But just give it a few minutes, a few hours, a night of sleep…it’s only a matter of time before you feel the effects of impact.

It started as a steady flow of quiet and wordless tears an hour or more after getting the news. I cried over lasagna that I thought I would have to force myself to eat…but if you know my mom…you know that woman can cook…and I’m pregnant. Even though I enjoyed the taste those soundless tears kept pouring down over mom’s homemade Italian.

I knew what I was feeling, what I was displaying, wasn’t enough. I knew that I needed to allow myself to feel all of the feelings at once or I would never be able to move on. It would just be random spouts of grief the rest of my pregnancy. So, I got undressed, I folded up a towel and put it on the shower floor, I turned on the hot water and let it all hit me. To say that I had “the ugly cry” is an understatement. I had the scary cry. The cry I had only seen a few times in my journalism career as I drove up early to an accident or a murder scene and family members were still there. It’s the cry that only comes from loss, a loss of life. Because that’s what it was.

Nearly every special needs mom has told me that I had to grieve the life that was lost. No, my son is not dead, but the son I thought I would have…that dream, that picture I had of our family died a little that night. Deep down I knew the portrait would still be beautiful, but it would look differently than I had imagined.

 This is normally the part of the article where I’d turn everything around and spin some sort of positive on the situation. Or tell you that I knew God was with me even at my worst moment. But I’m not going to do that. It wouldn’t be true to how I felt. It would be a disservice to any mom who may have just received similar news. No.

The water turned cold, I let my skin and tears dry, I got my awkward pregnant body off of the floor and I went to bed empty.

 

This is the sixth and final part of a series about finding out our unborn son has Down syndrome through an abnormal ultrasound and a Harmony blood test.  I wrote throughout the month and have kept every piece in tact so that it may help someone going through the same thing. Read part 1 here, Part 2 here, Part 3 here, Part 4 here and Part 5 herePlease keep in mind that these were my feelings at the time of receiving the news.

Share this PostShare on FacebookPin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterGoogle+Share on StumbleUponshare on TumblrDigg thisEmail to someoneShare on LinkedInBuffer this pagePrint this page

The Darkest Days: The Three Options {Prenatal Down Syndrome Diagnosis}

IMG_3161

This is the fifth part of a series about finding out our unborn son has Down syndrome through an abnormal ultrasound and a Harmony blood test.  I wrote throughout the month and have kept every piece in tact so that it may help someone going through the same thing. Read part 1 here, Part 2 here, Part 3 here and Part […]

Share this PostShare on FacebookPin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterGoogle+Share on StumbleUponshare on TumblrDigg thisEmail to someoneShare on LinkedInBuffer this pagePrint this page

Check Out the New Blog Design!!!

I realize I’ve been MIA for quite a while.  I decided that if I wanted to take this blogging thing seriously, that I needed a new look and a self-hosted site. What better time to do that than in the middle of PCSing from Las Vegas to New Mexico? That’s what I thought! The site […]

Share this PostShare on FacebookPin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterGoogle+Share on StumbleUponshare on TumblrDigg thisEmail to someoneShare on LinkedInBuffer this pagePrint this page

Ba-By-Q Shower {Co-Ed Barbecue Themed Baby Shower}

Spray Painted Mason Jars with Flowers, perfect Baby Shower decoration www.newsanchortohomemaker.com

Baby-Q Shower, a BBQ Themed Co-Ed Baby Shower I recently through a baby shower for our good friends Ruth and Austin.  Once again, I decided to throw a co-ed shower (read about “Ahoy It’s a Boy!” shower here)  because it’s just what fits our group of friends.  I love how relaxed a co-ed shower is. […]

Share this PostShare on FacebookPin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterGoogle+Share on StumbleUponshare on TumblrDigg thisEmail to someoneShare on LinkedInBuffer this pagePrint this page

Bryce Canyon National Park {Travel Review}

Bryce Canyon Travel Review on www.newsanchortohomemaker.com

Bryce Canyon National Park Travel Review. Andy and I went to Bryce Canyon National Park for the 4th of July.  We wanted to go on one last road trip before we leave Las Vegas (read about it here) and we decided this was the perfect 24 hour vacation destination.  The hoodoos (those tall, thin rock […]

Share this PostShare on FacebookPin on PinterestTweet about this on TwitterGoogle+Share on StumbleUponshare on TumblrDigg thisEmail to someoneShare on LinkedInBuffer this pagePrint this page