Mom Who Was Scared Of Having A Child With Down Syndrome Ends Up Seeing It As One Of Her Greatest Blessings
January 28, 2019 18:27 By Mambee
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This is achieved by a combined first-trimester screening. Usually, a blood test is taken between 9 and 12 weeks into the pregnancy to look for hormonal changes that can suggest whether there is a problem with the baby’s chromosomes.
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Then, an ultrasound scan is done at 12-13 weeks to measure the thickness of fluid behind the baby’s neck, called the nuchal translucency.
This is often larger in babies with Down syndrome.
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The result of both tests gives families enough time to prepare for this new life, which often requires more commitment and love.
Although it might still come as a shock to some parents, there is always room for acceptance, and an example is this mother's story.
In the story she shared with Love What Matters, Mandy Woodman, 26, was exhilarated when she discovered she was having her third child.
20 weeks in, she had her routine ultrasound scan, and it was then that she started to notice some differences when compared to her previous pregnancies.
After being checked for some symptoms, she was told her child might have Down Syndrome, and this frightened her.
However, subsequent diagnosis tests turned out negative, which gave Mandy and her husband some peace of mind even though they didn't rule it out completely.
And then the big day came. The Woodmans' welcomed a new member to their family, but were met with shocking news.
Their new baby, Lucy, had complications and had to be given special attention after birth. She was being watched by nurses, and they suspected that something was wrong.
A nurse practitioner was brought in, and the family was told their daughter most likely had Down syndrome.
Mandy and her family were distraught because she had been cleared of this condition just a few weeks before.
They were given some orientation on the condition but were unprepared for the new routine their special baby brought along. In search of someone with a similar experience, Mandy reached out to a friend who had a daughter with Down syndrome for some advice.
“I’ve been trying to think back to the first few weeks of my daughter’s life. Trying to remember all of the things I was thinking and feeling. I remember feeling so many conflicting emotions. It was ok to mourn the baby I thought I had, the future I thought I had, the future I thought she had, and still be excited about the baby I did get.”
This was a turning point for Mandy. From that moment on, rather than being worried, she focused on the joy of having her special daughter.
Although the next few months were filled with trials, such as Lucy undergoing heart surgery, Mandy and her family cherished every moment with their daughter.
Lucy is all grown up now, and the family feels very lucky to have been blessed with her. It doesn't mean the challenges are over, but they are sure to overcome it.
As disclosed by Mandy, this was why she decided to share her story and let people know that a lot of ‘good’ can come from this condition.
Improving family life of a child with Down syndrome
Just like Mandy said, there is good that comes from having a child with Down Syndrome. However, that can only be experienced if it is properly managed. Here are tips on how to live a fulfilled life in such situations:
1. Build a good support system filled with love for the child;
2. Encourage the kid to socialize with others;
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3. Entrust them with little responsibilities to boost their sense of independence;
4. Remain patient while learning and growing with them.
Mandy and her family were terrified at the thought of having a kid with Down syndrome. However, it turned out to be their greatest blessing when they accepted it and turned their focus to more fulfilling goals.
This is proof indeed that there's a lot of beauty despite the disability.