Dear Beth- 2 ½ years ago,
Oh girl…… I want to hug you and shake you at the same time. I want to tell you know how silly you are being. Really? Your first thought is that her Daddy will never walk her down the aisle? Really, IF she chooses to get married, then she will get married. My goodness, you are limiting her before she even has a chance to leave the hospital.
Just stop thinking about all the things that will never happen and focus on your new path. It will be an amazing journey and it will change you in ways you never thought were possible.
Delphine is 3 days old and The Neonatologist walked in to tell you the 6 words that CHANGED your life. “We think she has Down syndrome.” WOW! That was hard to hear. Those words cut like a knife. You are shocked and confused and you feel lost. Now, before you lose your mind and start spinning out of control, bear with me. Grab your tissues and take a few deep breaths. Cry, let yourself cry.
But, remember she is just a baby that needs you more than anything else in this world. You got this and you don’t know it yet, but there is a whole community of other moms that GOT YOU. Trust me when I say you are going to be ok. You are not alone. I am telling you this will be the most life changing journey you have been on thus far.
I wanted to give you some time to feel all the feels. It is ok. But, please do not stay in the negative places for long…. You know what I am talking about. Stop freaking out! Together you are going to change the world, one negative thought and comment at a time. She will have the ability to do whatever she wants to do and whatever she puts her mind to do.
She WILL walk, when she is ready. Stand your ground when talking to Doctors and therapists. You are her person, she needs you to follow your Mommy gut and go for it. Trust me, she is a force to be reckoned with!
Hear me out. Yes, Delphine has Down syndrome, it is not the end of the world. It is just a new and different path. Go share your baby with the world and do not worry about what people will think or what they will say. WHO CARES? It’s your baby. Go home, love her, show her that she will move mountains.
You are all going to be just fine. I cannot tell you enough how lucky you are! How much you will learn and grow from your truly amazing daughter.
You have some truly amazing friends. They will surround you with more love and support that you could ever have imagined. Your family and friends will rally around you and help you advocate for your daughter and for your new Down syndrome community.
Be the change you want to see in the world. You got this. Hold your head high and go change the world to be a better place for Del and for all of her Rockin’ friends.
Your future self
Beth lives in Michigan with her 2 kiddos, Delphine-2 1/2 years old and Conrad- 9 years old, husband-Tom and dog- Bentley. Follow Delphine's facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/downrightDELighted
This letter is part of DSDN's October Down Syndrome Awareness Month campaign. We asked our members to write a letter to themselves during the time they received the diagnosis. Do you know a parent with a child under the age of 4 who needs connections and support? Let DSDN help and get started here.