For New Parents...


I'm not sure how you found me, but I'm glad you are here.  My twins were born on February 16, 2011.  The oldest twin, my second born child, has Down syndrome.  He is a fantastic kid and at this point is just another voice in the cacophony that is my house.  He's one more in our pack of 5.

Before I forget, Congratulations!  Having a baby, any baby, is hard work. 

I don't know you yet so I don't know your exact circumstances.  Maybe you knew your child's diagnosis ahead of time through prenatal screening.  Maybe you knew about it shortly before.  Maybe you didn't know until your little one was born.  In any event, you are now a proud parent.

Congratulations again.

I'm sure right now you are focused on the diagnosis.  That is natural, being a new thing and all. Before we go any further I want to tell you to know that your child is more than his or her diagnosis or any list of ailments.  Once you get to know this little person, that will be more evident.  But for now, please don't forget to celebrate their arrival.

I'm sure there is a lot of things going on in your head right now.  Some of them may be pretty negative, depending on what your circumstances are, what you know, what you think you know and how much exposure you've had to Down syndrome in your life before now.  It doesn't mean you are a bad person, it doesn't mean that you do not love your baby.  Realizing that you might have been wrong about some things in this world is part of the process.  It is normal

We spend our entire pregnancy imagining what this little person is going to be like.  We live in a world that has some pretty narrow views and an emphasis on "perfection".  As a result, no one imagines their child having special needs.  No one imagines Down syndrome. But, here it is, and here you are.

I started this blog originally as a series of open letters to my family and friends as I dealt with the my son's diagnosis (he also had an AVSD which was repaired when he was two).  I knew practically nothing when Wyatt came into this world;  thankfully that is no longer the case. I have tried to include many resources here, especially those tailored to new parents.  The list is by no means inclusive and is added to frequently.  As you build your support system, as you build your knowledge base, you may find some of these useful.  I hope you do.

There are many parents out there that have found themselves right where you are right now.  Many of them are online and have shared their stories. Hopefully my blog will help you connect to where you need to go.

You will need help.  You will need help with your baby, you will need help with things like meals and housework.  You will also need help as you sort out your new life together.  Again, part of the process.

Educate yourself.  Educate those around you. Fear stems from ignorance, knowledge is power. The more you know going into this, the easier it will be.  The more you know, the more confident you will become and that will make you a better parent and a better advocate for your child.  You are their best advocate right now you know.  That will change as they grow and develop and assume their own identities and eventually find the way to advocate for themselves. Help pave the way so that your son or daughter can live as independently as possible and have the rights and respect that they so richly deserve.

Finally, love your child.  Love is the greatest, single most effective tool you have.

Once again, thank you for stopping by.  I wish you and your family all the best.


Mommy's Got You, Wyatt
Wyatt, a few hours old.  We've gotcha, buddy...
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