Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Things That Make You Go Hmmmm

There’s talk of a new blood test that can determine if a baby has Down syndrome prior to birth. It’s obviously less invasive than an amniocentesis or CVS. A lot of women will probably want this test. I can see where this test would be useful and a lot safer than other forms of testing, which are often quite invasive and risky. At the same time, are people with Down syndrome going to disappear completely if this test becomes routine for pregnant women? 90% + of babies diagnosed with Down syndrome while in the womb are aborted.

I’m not a political person at all. However, I find it interesting that Texas Governor, Rick Perry is proposing that all women whom get abortions must have an ultrasound first and hear the baby’s heartbeat. Even though Rick Perry is an Aggie, I don’t really care much for him. However, this makes me wonder…will it change the minds of women whom already have a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome and are thinking about terminating? Better yet, send them to spend a day with me or some of my friends whom also have a child with Down syndrome so they can see how “normal” our lives really are. Yes, there are more doctor appointments and our children meet milestones in their own time…but they DO meet them. Best of all, we feel blessed(and GRATEFUL) to have these “imperfect” children. They aren’t imperfect to us though. And they certainly aren’t imperfect in the eyes of God.

I see tons of children when I’m grocery shopping and out in public. During the past year, I can count on ONE hand how many of those children had Down syndrome(not counting the Buddy Walk ;-) ). It’s true, Down syndrome is the most common Genetic Disorder…but it seems so rare when you think about it. I read an article a few months back about how Down syndrome isn’t uncommon in Ireland because abortion is illegal there. In other words, kids grow up around other kids with and without Down syndrome.

I’m not trying to spark a pro-life vs. pro-choice debate. God didn’t put me on this earth to judge others. It’s not my place.

Here’s part of an article I read today, written by Kurt Kondrich, father of Chloe, a beautiful little girl with Down syndrome.

"In the fictional novel The Clowns of God by Morris West, Jesus comes back to earth, and some people think it’s Him while some don’t. At one point, Jesus is at a school for children with Down syndrome, and He is holding a little girl. Jesus says:

I know what you are thinking. You need a sign. What better one could I give but to make this little one whole and new? I could do it, but I will not. I am the Lord and not a conjurer. I gave this mite a gift I denied to all of you — eternal innocence. To you she looks imperfect — but to me she is flawless, like the bud that dies unopened or the fledgling that falls from the nest to be devoured by ants. She will never offend me, as all of you have done. She will never pervert or destroy the work of my Father’s hands. She is necessary to you. She will evoke the kindness that will keep you human. Her infirmity will prompt you to gratitude for your own good fortune… More! She will remind you every day that I am who I am, that my ways are not yours, and that the smallest dust mite whirled in the darkest spaces does not fall out of my hand… I have chosen you. You have not chosen me. This little one is my sign to you. Treasure her!

After spending years on the streets as a Police Officer and witnessing how the devil quickly invades and corrupts people, it is priceless to be in the presence of a soul that cannot be compromised. This must make the devil absolutely consumed with rage, and I believe that is why he is using the ungodly instrument of abortion to eliminate these precious individuals before they arrive in the world to spread unimpeded light and love. Nothing must make the devil madder than an incorruptible soul especially when so many in the world have willingly followed his path of lies and deception (Matthew 7:13-14: “Wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life and only a few find it”)."

You can read the full article here:

Monday, January 24, 2011

11 months old

He fell asleep in Mommy and Daddy's bed

Austin is exactly 11 months old today! Where has the time gone?! He’ll be a year old in a month. I ordered his birthday invitations on Sunday. We’re having a relatively small birthday party at a clubhouse. I can’t wait to celebrate his first year…what an amazing year it’s been! We have so much to be thankful for. We are truly blessed!

I’ll leave you with 2 videos:

He crawled for about 5 seconds before we shot this video. We tried to get him to do it again, but he wouldn't do it for the camera. ;-)


Friday, January 21, 2011

A Crazy Week

It’s been quite an eventful week for our family. I’m ready for things to go back to our usual, normal and boring routine. I think we sometimes take for granted the joy of simplicity.

We went to Children’s for the MRI. Of course, you have to arrive an hour early and go through the admissions process. Then we’re off to Radiology where we sit. And wait….and wait. This is not a pleasant experience when you have a 10 month old who A) isn’t allowed to eat or drink anything. B) is sounding and feeling worse by the minute. When they finally called our name for the MRI the nurse immediately noticed that Austin didn’t look so well. I explained to her that he’s been congested…and now coughing his little head off. Sure enough, he was running a temperature and they decided it would be best to not perform the procedure(MRI), especially since it was elective to begin with. We wasted 2 hours, but I would rather play it safe and not have Austin put under anesthesia when he’s sick.

I called the pediatrician’s office on our way home and they told us to come in. Dr. C ordered a test for Strep and the Flu, both came back negative…thank GOD! So, Austin was diagnosed with a pesky viral infection and we were advised to continue with our breathing treatments. Unfortunately, Austin didn’t get better…and was back in Dr. C’s office 48 hours later because he was still running a fever. Austin’s nurse suspected he had an ear infection and she was correct. In fact, both of Austin’s ears were infected. He was also diagnosed with Bronchitis. Austin was given a Rocephin shot in the office and he’s also on an oral antibiotic for the next 10 days. Dr. C also mentioned that the tubes and removal of adenoids will benefit Austin greatly. As soon as we can get him well, I’ll schedule that surgery with the ENT. We can’t reschedule the MRI until Austin’s been well for 4 weeks.

Austin is feeling MUCH better. It was so hard seeing him so sick. Thankfully, his antibiotics are working and he’s about 80% better.

I don’t know if any of you watch Teen Mom 2 on MTV, but it’s probably my most guilty pleasure. I didn’t expect Teen Mom to MAKE ME CRY this week. There is a girl on the show who has twins. She noticed that one of the twins doesn’t seem to be developing like the other. Apparently, the baby has some nerve damage…she won’t put weight on her legs or grasp things. They had a less than tactful doctor who blurted out, “Her arms are too short…she‘s not proportionate” I know what it feels like to be told there’s something “wrong” with your child. And by wrong, I mean different. It’s devastating and it doesn’t help when the doctor has the personality of a rock. The baby girl on Teen Mom is precious…looking at her sweet face, I didn’t see anything wrong with her. I just wanted to pick her up and love her.

Don’t even get me started on American Idol…I had tears when a woman told her story of having a special needs child. She was encouraged NOT to continue her pregnancy, but she chose to give her daughter a chance. Her daughter has some hearing problems, but other than that she’s pretty healthy.

Okay, enough about my reality shows. It just amazes me how differently I look at situations now that I’m a mom. Especially a mom of a child with special needs. I can empathize more with others…what a beautiful gift. I have Austin to thank for that!

Monday, January 17, 2011


Austin hadn’t had therapy for nearly a month due to his surgery and the holidays. Both his OT and therapist noticed major changes and progress on Thursday at therapy. I could tell they were so impressed, which made my heart feel so incredibly good. All of his hard work has paid off! He’s more stable on his feet, able to sit for a longer period of time, playing with his toys for entertainment…not just grabbing them or putting them in his mouth. ALSO…he’s rolling his Oball to us and when he roll it back to him, he rolls it back to us and so on. He’s playing with us and he catches on so fast!

Unfortunately, Austin’s sick at the moment. My sweet boy just can’t catch a break. Being the germ-a-phobe that I am, I noticed a few snotty noses at our Mommy and Me class last week. Sure enough, Austin woke up on Saturday morning congested and covered in snot. I know getting sick is inevitable when you’re around other children and it’s important to build up immunities. As a teacher, I think I’ve built up every immunity that there is. However, the germ-a-phobe in me part of me wants to keep Austin in a bubble and away from the germs. Haha The congestion and runny nose are now accompanied by a screeching cough. We busted out the nebulizer this morning and it looks like we’ll do doing breathing treatments every few hours.

Austin’s getting better at using his hands to feed himself. We’re starting to wean him off the bottle and he seems to be doing well. He actually hasn’t WANTED his bottle for about a month…it’s a struggle to get him to take even a few ounces.

I need to wrap this up. Austin’s MRI is in a few hours and he’ll have anesthesia, so please pray he does well.

Check out the curls! How cute are they?!


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

We're off to a great start

I’ve been meaning to update, but as Clairee from Steel Magnolias said, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, come sit by me.”

The new year ended with a visit to the Emergency Room. Austin began screaming and was inconsolable after his bath. Ryan and I were both terrified. Luckily, the wait wasn’t very long and we were in and out of the ER in 40 minutes. Write that down in the record books. Austin had ANOTHER ear infection. My poor baby and his ears. Those tubes cannot come soon enough. His MRI is scheduled for next week and hopefully it will rule out anything serious concerning the eye movement.

I was really concerned about Austin not eating table foods. Dr. C said children with Down syndrome have a greater chance of choking and can struggle when being introduced to table foods. I decided to try Gerber “lil’crunchies.” He didn’t do well with the puffs, so I was skeptical. The lil crunchies are bigger, too. However, he took to them really well and had no issues. In fact, he LOVES them! We have since moved on to gold fish, graham crackers, cooked carrots and his current favorite: Gerber cereal bars. He’s still working on his fine motor skills and we’re practicing picking up food and eating it. This is such a HUGE step for Austin and we’re so, so proud of his progress!

I’ll leave you with pictures:

New "Big Boy" carseat