Saturday, February 14, 2009

I Wish I Would Have Known quickly I'd come to see Bridget as perfect, and the rest of the world as a little flawed.

Right after Bridget was born, there was a sense of concern and uncertainty about her future (see "Living in the Light" on the sidebar to the right for more on this) that seemed to hover around us even though we were trying desperately to find our way out of it. Acquaintances were sad for us. Family and friends were supportive and kind, but you could just feel the elephant in the room. I understand now that the heaviness was the unknown.

Health concerns aside, it kills me that there was any sadness surrounding Bridget. We couldn't have known anything different, but I wish we would have. I wish we would have been able to see that we would all be more than fine, and that Bridget would thrive. As time has passed, and as Bridget has grown, we have come to see that there was no reason to be sad or scared.

I write now almost with a sense of rebellion. I keep thinking, Is this what all the fuss was about?

I wish we could have known--could have seen into the future--how things would be today...that we would feel as though we could not live without this child; that she brightens our every day and brings meaning to our lives in ways we could never have imagined.

Far from the images we envisioned the day she was born, we’ve come to know Bridget as a healthy and expressive little girl who is reaching milestones on her own terms. She does not give up on anything, and we delight in her tenacity and determination.

Just look at this picture. You can't look at Bridget and be sad. She does not see herself as challenged. She is just a kid--being, and doing. Like everyone else, Bridget has her own set of skills and challenges. Like everyone else, she's also full of layers--full of dimension--and potential.

Thank you, Bridgey, for all you bring to our lives. I look forward to every day we get to spend together! Happy Valentine's Day, my beautiful little girl.


  1. What is there to say but ditto to that! I know exactly how you feel!!

  2. " quickly I'd come to see Bridget as perfect, and the rest of the world as a little flawed." This was perfectly said. I love reading your insights. I feel the same way about John Michael today vs. the overwhelming sadness we felt for a little while due to the unknown. We are more than OK!

  3. Looking at Bridget's pictures all I can see is how easy is to LOVE and EMBRACE this BEAUTIFUL little girl ~

  4. Lisa, great post! If only we knew then what we know vastly different! I remember telling myself as I lay in the hospital bed right after Reid was born..."pull yourself out of it, a year from now you will be so in love with this little guy and so mad at yourself that you did not live in this moment!". But, sadly I was still sad, and scared, and emotionally did not live in that moment as I wish I would have. If today I were to have another child and they told me at birth that he or she had Down syndrome I would not hesitate for a second to grab that little one near me and CELEBRATE that new life. You are right...truly I think the heaviness and the sadness is the fear of the unknown. It didn't take me a year to fall madly in love with him, but I wish I had not wasted 1 minute...if only I had known what I know now! :) I think this a really important post for any new parents who find your blog! Bridget is...perfect! :)

  5. Thank you for your post - well said!
    If only our "now-selves" could go back in time to our "then-selves" and just tell them that it would be ok. (Does that make sense??)
    But I suppose part of the gift that our children have brought us was to move through the sorrow into the acceptance and finally to the pure love and amazement - for some it took a moment, for others a little longer. It was the path we had to walk at the time for whatever reason.
    Great Post!!

  6. May you look back and wish you'd known what you know now, but at least you can be there to provide support to new parents going through the same thing you went through. The more of us that discover how wonderful our lives are with the additions of our beautiful children with the extra chromosomes, the more we can educate others to see what we see. Bridget's just gorgeous, and radiates light and spirit.

  7. THANK YOU FOR CREATING THIS SITE. i am a 39yr old first-time mom and my 18mo son may have autism. though my situation is different, the process we all go through does not seem so different. we're currently going through Early Intervention, but i've been struggling with this for about a month. i suppose it's been a combination of fear, focusing on labels, and fighting what is. i had recently hit a low but then realized that even the diagnosis would not change what i feel about him. it will not take him from me. hearing your process/thoughts (and awesome quotes/references) through the listed "important posts" is just what i need to help me get over the first hump with all this. THANK YOU FOR YOUR HONESTY, POSITIVITY, AND GREAT PERSPECTIVE... ALSO FOR SHARING NEW IDEAS AND REMINDING ME OF WHAT I ALREADY KNOW. ALOHA AND GOD BLESS