Saturday, October 10, 2009

Bailey Part 2

Again, remember how I think has changed.

I was so afraid about what life with Bailey would be like. Would she ever walk? Would she ever talk? Are kids going to make fun of her? Will she get married? I cried... a lot! Keith was amazing. He was supportive, listened to my concerns, and did research. He would go home, find positive articles on the Internet and bring them to the hospital.

The Down syndrome diagnosis had not yet been made. However, through our research we knew there were a few common characteristics. We knew about the gap between her toes, the slanted eyes, Palmer crease, shorter limbs, and low muscle tone. We also knew about medical complications associated with Down syndrome. Those included, congenital heart defects, frequent ear infections, sleep apnea, thyroid problems, and an increased risk of developing leukemia.

So, knowing what I know, I started looking at Bailey from head to toe. She had the gap between her toes and her eyes were slanted, but that is all. Everything else seemed "normal". She didn't have a heart defect or any other medical complications. Maybe, just maybe, these "professionals" were wrong.

The next morning my thoughts that the doctors were wrong quickly diminished. Again, while I was alone, another doctor entered my room. Dr. R introduced himself as the pediatric cardiologist. Crap! All I could think about was how much I wanted this guy to leave my room. I didn't want to hear it. I was tired of getting bad news. I wanted that perfect child I had been dreaming of. Why can't she just be perfect? Dr. R began to describe the murmur he was hearing and said they would like to do an echocardiogram on Bailey. He said this would help them diagnose what could be causing the murmur. He left.

Like the previous visit with the other doctor I remained calm until I was once again alone. Then, I lost it. I began to cry hysterically. I couldn't believe this was happening. Keith came in soon after Dr. R left. I began to tell him what the doctor said. At that moment, he and I knew Bailey had Down syndrome.

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