Our first few days home were, well I don't even know how to describe them. I felt like a zombie, I hadn't slept in about 4 days and was an emotional wreck. I didn't feel like doing anything with this new baby, but knew that I had to bond with her, I needed her to know that I loved her no matter what but I didn't feel like showing it. My mom kept trying to get me to just go sleep and let her do the night feedings but I refused.
I had breastfed my son and therefore was the only one that could feed him, which I actually loved because no matter who all was around I was the only one he NEEDED. I had a breast reduction 2 months before I became pregnant with Ella (again, wasn't planning on getting pregnant) so I couldn't breastfeed. It felt to me that if I didn't get up in the middle of the night to feed her I may never bond with her.
So, after days without sleep and all the stress (oh yeah I forgot to mention that my 2 1/2 year old son was a mess. I had never spent a night away from him and had just spent 3, and when I did come home I was sobbing and just a total wreck. Hunter was very angry at me, which broke my heart. He would love on the baby but would have nothing to do with me.) I felt like everyone would be better off if I would just die. I was not capable of raising a child with Down Syndrome, what did I know? Finally my mom convinced me that I needed to go to my psychiatrist and be put on a higher dose of antidepressants, I have been taking them since 2001. So, after a few days of higher doses of medication and some pills to make me sleep I was at least functioning.
I remember when ECI (Early Childhood Intervention) first came to the house. Ella was 2 weeks old and there was already therapists, they brought a video about their programs and told me to watch it when I felt like it. My mom and I watched it a couple of nights later. After, my mom asked me what I thought and I said this is not what I wanted for my life. It was so strange I just felt hopeless and like it was all a dream. People from our church would say, "God only gives special babies to special moms" and "God doesn't give you more than you can handle." As someone very new to religion quite frankly I was mad at God, he had definitely made a mistake.
I'm going to go ahead and fast forward to now. Ella is 7 months old and I can not imagine her, nor would I want her another way. I know that is a far leap and I don't really know how it happened but that is the truth. I thank God everyday for her, even though I still have the whys? Why does she have to have Down Syndrome? Why was I picked to raise her? I never thought there would come a day when I looked at my precious baby and didn't see IT. But I don't see IT, or maybe I do but have just finally accepted it. All I know is that I have a wonderful, happy, fat baby who is just Ella. So what if she isn't the baby I dreamed of, I wouldn't change one single thing about her.
I definitely have my worries about her future. But they are not what will she not be able to do, because I know that there is no limit. My worries are about the ignorant people of the world putting limits on her. I NEVER want my baby to be called names and made fun of, but I am not naive and know that it will happen. I am already so defensive, I will see people staring at her and something shifts inside of me. I want to ask them what their problem is and give them a piece of my mind. But then I stop and think for a second. Ella is the most beautiful baby I have ever seen, not that I am biased, but really she is. Not to mention that she will smile at anyone who makes contact with her and when the child smiles she glows. So, no wonder people stare at her how could they not?