Bonus Baby

Today might appear to be simply March 21 (3/21), but for those of us who are the lucky few, it is World Down Syndrome Day. Twenty-four years ago on this day, I was two weeks out from giving birth to my first child. We already knew it was going to be a boy, so a name had been selected, and we were eager to meet him. I was twenty-seven years old. My pregnancy was pretty typical and I was as big a whale. Seriously, at five months pregnant, people either asked if I was having twins or if I was close to my due date. I had dreams for this boy. And then, on April 7, 1995, our path changed.

In true authenticity, I was heartbroken, stunned, and completely unsure of what to do next. Grief was my companion. But, during this time, I was also dealing with Brian’s active alcoholism, so when I look back now, I realize that God sent Bailey to save me. He saved me from obsessing about my spouse’s drinking and provided a different focus. I hit the ground running.

I wasn’t sure about how his life would be. I was challenged every step of the way and it became my life purpose to educate those around us. He is one of my greatest teachers. Constantly showing me how to accept and love unconditional. Oh, sure, he can be a royal pain in the ass and have a delightful attitude, but that just shows that he is a perfectly imperfect human just like the rest of us.

Today, he is employed at the greatest place on the planet where he is loved and accepted. He is thriving and completely rocking that extra chromosome. Of course, there are moments where I still grieve the loss of what I thought his life would be like, but there are no regrets. He has enhanced my life and everyone around him.

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2 thoughts on “Bonus Baby

  1. It is sad when people refuse to let children teach them. My 10 year old teaches me all the time. Uncondirional love, humility, empathy. I can’t imagine being too prideful to learn from her. We should all want to better ourselves.

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  2. That’s beautiful Allison❤️. Our oldest son Daniel and his wife live in the DC area and adopted two boys with Downs from Bulgaria. They are wonderful but honestly ( at first) I had to adjust what I always pictured my grandchildren to be. We are all blessed by these boys now- God always figures it out before we do r.ight?! AlsO our daughter Katie teaches adults with Downs at DSL. We also care for Ms Riley , who’s youngest grandson has Downs- Will Petrando= I know you know him and his mom Rebekah

    .

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