Before having my baby this past September, I always wondered what it would be like going back to work while also being a mom. As a second grade teacher, I was an extreme planner. I planned every single second of each day in hopes of being an engaging and memorable teacher for my students. I’ll be honest though, it was also for my own sanity. So, when my water broke while I was getting ready for the first day of school, six days ahead of my due date, I was thrown for a loop.
After calling in for a substitute teacher, my husband and I raced to the hospital, and after a long day of labor and laughs, I had my son at 9:15 that night.
Those first two days in the hospital were magical. Our friends and family came to our side and helped us celebrate our son. Our room was filled with flowers and happiness. It was everything I imagined those first two days to be. But, as I’ve already mentioned, you can’t plan everything.
On the second day, the nurse practitioner closed our recovery room door, and through teary eyes told us that there may be something about Nicholas that we needed to look into. After waiting a painful week for the results of a blood test, we learned that our baby boy had Trisomy 21, or Down syndrome. I want to share with the world what we went through in those days, but first I want to explain why I feel compelled to share.
I went through a very hard time during those first two months, harder than I could have imagined. The thing that helped me come out of my post-partum depression significantly was the online community of mothers who also have children born with a little extra love. I read about mothers who knew ahead of time what was to come for their unborn miracle, and I read about moms like me who found out after the fact. I learned that I was not alone, and that there are so many moms out there who went through the same thing and wouldn’t change a second of it.
Five months later, I cherish every single day with my son. I couldn’t be happier with this baby who not only brings me immeasurable joy, but sleeps through the night! I am gearing up to go back to work (four months later than I originally planned), and wish to join the army of moms that are not only caring for their own miracles, but taking the time to help other moms.
I believe that I was meant to have Nicholas. Not only will he make me a better person AND a better educator, but he has already caused a ripple of compassion in both our family and community.
Look at this boy! He is worth every second of the emotional roller coaster I rode to get me to this point. The hardest part of his first week was that the doctors had me actually looking for the traits that come with Down’s syndrome and it felt like I was looking for things that were “wrong” with him. Could you imagine anything being wrong with this face?! Not in a million years!
If you are a new mom and going through a similar situation, just know that your baby is perfect for you and will make you whole! You will see!
I am excited to share my story, from those early days in the hospital to my transition back to work. I don’t know how it will go, but I realized five months ago that you really can’t plan everything!