My Unexpected Little Blessing

The surprise of a baby with Down syndrome – the story begins at the bottom of this page.

The Bonus Chromosome

on September 20, 2012

Determining the best way to tell everyone close to us was a difficult decision. Especially considering the majority of our family is not close by. We struggled with telling people over the phone, but in a lot of cases there just wasn’t another option. Everyone was very receptive and accepting of our little bundle of joy. And that definitely made things a little better. I know it was probably a huge shock to everyone, as it definitely was to us. I remember during a prenatal appointment where I was offered to have the genetic testing done, I was told that the odds of having a baby with Down syndrome at my age was 1 in 900. Not very likely, to say the least. But..here we are. I guess someone has to be the 1.

When she was first born, we looked at her and thought, “she’s perfect.” And we still feel that way today. I mean….look at that adorable little girl totally rockin’ that leopard print dress……what’s not to love? I wouldn’t change her…..she lights up my day. I might change the world around her though!

For those of you that may not know exactly what DS is, here is a brief synopsis:

Normally, at the time of conception a baby inherits genetic information from its parents in the form of 46 chromosomes: 23 from the mother and 23 from the father. In most cases of Down syndrome, a child gets an extra chromosome 21 — for a total of 47 chromosomes instead of 46. It’s this extra genetic material that causes the physical features and developmental delays associated with DS. No one knows why DS occurs and there’s no way to prevent the chromosomal error that causes it.

We have actually started describing Regan’s genetic makeup as half of mommy (the first set of 23 chromosomes), half of daddy (the second set of 23 chromosomes), and a cherry on top (that bonus chromosome)!

We have wondered if there is something in the genetic makeup of myself or Todd that caused this to carry over to Regan. But, not the case. We are not carriers for that extra genetic material. So our particular situation is the “chance” occurrance. Well, at least that is what the medical world calls it. I call it God’s plan.

“My face may be different
But my feelings the same
I laugh and I cry
And I take pride in my gains
I was sent here among you
To teach you to love
As God in the heavens
Looks down from above
To Him I’m no different
His love knows no bounds
It’s those here among you
In cities and towns
That judge me by standards
That man has imparted
But this family I’ve chosen
Will help me get started
For I’m one of the children
So special and few
That came here to learn
The same lessons as you
That love is acceptance
It must come from the heart
We all have the same purpose
Though not the same start
The Lord gave me life
To live and embrace
And I’ll do it as you do
But at my own pace”

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