a day for down syndrome.

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A day for gettin’ Down…It’s a celebration, bishes!

Before having Aisha, I never had a cause.

Several friends and loved ones have been affected by, or lost their lives to various illnesses such as depression, cancer, heart disease, HIV/AIDS, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s. Others have children with autism, cleft palate, juvenile diabetes, ADHD, or seizure-related disorders.

I have sympathized and sent condolences, offered words of support (or in some cases, attended funerals) and on occasion written about the battles won and lost by the people I’ve known. Yet in doing so, I never felt “close” to the situation – even when it was one of my own fighting the good fight.

Aisha’s pre-natal diagnosis of Trisomy 21 changed all of that. Continue reading

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then and now.

il_fullxfull.165641151I simply cannot believe she is two weeks old today.

So it’s been just over two weeks since I last wrote, and obviously, quite a bit has happened since then – namely, I had a baby! Me. I gave birth. To a person. It’s amazing how much life can change in the span of fourteen days.

First, I would like to thank everyone for the well-wishes, prayers, thoughts, emails and messages during this time. Even though I was off busy birthin’ a baby, I can’t tell you how much I missed blogging, and how touched I was by the outpouring of support. You all are swell. Seriously.

I admit that I am having some difficulty writing this post. I’m scrolling through my phone looking for pictures to supplement, and I’m overcome with emotion. Aisha’s delivery and birth were difficult – traumatic, even. We almost didn’t make it. And while we’ve both come out of the experience no worse for wear, the enormity of it seeps into my conscience every now and then, and it’s sobering. Sometimes I tear up. Sometimes I cry outright.  Continue reading

the final countdown.

Today’s musical interlude brought to you courtesy of Europe.

Bags are packed. All things baby have been set up, washed, placed and purchased.

Family and friends are all on standby. Camera batteries are fresh. Phones have been charged.

The boy is watching a movie to distract himself. I’m not quite sleepy, so I’m doing some editing work for a client, trying to take my mind off off what is in store for me tomorrow.

I’ve had my final meal of the day; I can’t eat anything after midnight.

I’ve cried. I’ve prayed. I requested that others do the same (pray, not cry).

I’ve done all that there is to do.

By this time tomorrow, I’ll be a mommy.

Un-freaking-believable.

Wish me luck, y’all.

cease and desist.

advice onesie
Yeah…I’m good, thanks.

I have an acquaintance who had a baby, like, a minute ago, and she has suddenly become the rather insufferable Expert Of All Things Baby-Related (EATBR).

From aspirators to zinc cream, she is constantly dispensing advice on which brand/size/colour/flavour/version of a technique, product or service is best. I wouldn’t find her so annoying if this was her fifth of sixth child (in fact, then she would have earned the title of EATBR, and I might be inclined to take a note or two). But alas, this is her first babe, her first shot at parenthood – likely the first time in her life she’s ever heard the terms colostrum, gripe water or swaddle.

And yet, somehow, miraculously, after having barely just squeezed progeny from her loins, she has earned her Level Nine Grand Wizardress of Knowledge badge, entitling her to spew nuggets of wisdom on other, hapless first-time moms-to-be.

Like me. Continue reading

OT: a mother’s love.

baby-elephant
Does it extend across species?

I just read the saddest story in the Huffington Post about a baby elephant in China that was attacked and subsequently abandoned by its mother. The little one cried for five hours (just typing that made me teary-eyed), and the story made me want to gather up this giant baby in my arms and console him.

It was this sentence that started the welling of the wet stuff:

“Photos taken of the crying baby elephant, named Zhuang Zhuang, show tears streaming from his red eyes and down his face. In one shot, he is seen lying under a blanket while he appears to weep.”

The accompanying photo (not the one above) finished me. I couldn’t bear to watch the video.

Generally, I’m a hardass to the human condition, but I’m a big animal-sucky; almost any picture or video of cutelings can set off a series of “awwwwww” from me. And heaven help me if said photo or footage is about abandoned or distressed animals.

On a normal, non-pregnant day, I’m gutted. With all the hormones coursing through my veins lately, I simply cannot.