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Your heart will break and break and break again

Posted Sep 26 2008 3:18pm

Laurie of Days with Dylan wrote me an email asking about the part in my book when our family practitioner tells me that my life, as Avery’s mom, will be filled with heartache. She wondered if what he said had proven to be true for me.

He didn’t know what he was talking about, of course, but I didn’t know it then. Especially in the beginning, when I was trying to find my way, I let the words of doctors and nurses and other professionals carry a lot of weight. What I should have done, what I would have done if I’d known better, was to listen to the parents of babies and children with Down syndrome. We quickly become the best experts on our kids.

So this is what I wrote back to her:
“About the heart breaking, the answer is no, not in the way he meant, but yes, too, in a different way. I wonder, do you have other children? My heart breaks a little bit almost all the time over all my kids…the way I love them so much, the way they’re growing so fast, and I miss the babies they were, but I love the little people they are becoming…so that’s what I’ve found. It’s the same with Avery. I miss all the old stages of him, and that makes me a little sad, but I love who he is now, too.”

Thanks, Laurie, for the excellent question and for allowing me to share it here.

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