The following was written by Nick McGivney, a father who lives in Ireland and blogs about his son Jacob (who has Ds). I learned about him through this post by Lito. Please visit Our Jacob and The Accidental Advocate to learn more about these dads and their unique perspectives.
Thank you so bloody much for picking on me. Thanks for that first terrifying moment when I saw his different eyes and the world fell away. Thanks for that cold, dislocated feeling when the doctor said the chromosome test confirms it. Thanks for the anger and resentment. Thanks a lot for picking on me.
Thanks for all the new words I’ve had to learn. Thanks for the glory of meiotic nondisjunction events. Thanks for the single palmar fold. Thanks for trisomy, mosaicism, epicanthal folds, hypothyroid, hypotonia and arrhythmia. Thanks for that extra wide gap between the big toe and the rest. Thanks for a life that was complicated already, and now this? Thanks for the unannounced bouts of embarrassment. Thanks for pitying looks and well-meant overcompensation.
Thank you so much for picking on me. Thanks for Significant Life-Threatening Events and Near Misses. Thanks for beeping monitors and oxygen tubes and cluster care. Thanks for apnoea and last Christmas, Lord. Thanks for these fears for the future. Thanks for this uncertainty of the present. Thanks for red tape and robot-voiced bureaucracy. Thanks for all those forms I love to fill. Thank you indeed for picking on me.
But then thank you for January and that first smile.
Thank you for almost but not quite taking back the gift I didn’t know you’d given. Thank you for that rush of blood that makes my heart thump louder. Thank you for the knowledge that I will protect him with my every breath. Thank you for the help, along some dark steps, from caring strangers more qualified than I. Thank you for neighbours who don’t hesitate. Thank you for trisomy and mosaicism and epicanthal folds. Thanks for hypothyroid and hypotonia and arrhythmia. Thanks for Significant Life-Threatening Events and Near Misses. Thanks for beeping monitors and oxygen tubes and cluster care. Thank you for the love that swells up inside to hurting when I look at him. Thank you for each one of our wonderful, imperfect family. Thank you for that very first smile. Thank you for that very first smile. Thank you for that very first smile.