When the doctor offered us the Integrated Prenatal Screening during one of my first prenatal appointments, my husband and I agreed to it without much thought. I think we even replied with the cliché response of wanting to know “just incase” to help us prepare if we needed to. Being young and healthy we assumed we would not need to worry ourselves about it, based on my age
the chances of having a child with Down syndrome were 1 in 769. I did the blood work and ultrasound, and like many other pregnant ladies, promptly forgot all about it.
Fast forward a few months, and the doctor informed us that my blood work has been flagged as high risk. She sounded a bit concerned but still the chances of the baby having Down Syndrome was only 1 in 55, “that’s less than a 2% chance,” she said while handing us the information for a rush appointment with a genetics counsellor at a hospital two hours from home. As scary as it sounded we were still optimistic everything would come back clear.
At about 20 weeks pregnant we travelled to London to meet with a genetic counsellor who explained how the screening process works, and what triggered the positive screen result. She spoke a bit about what Down Syndrome is, offering a medical defnition of the condition and correlated facts. She offered some information on potential next steps including a more detailed anatomy scan, another screening test (the Non-Invasive Prenatal Test), or amniocentesis if we wanted a defnitive diagnosis. She also explained what further options existed beyond testing – including the option to terminate our pregnancy. We clearly stated termination was not an option we were interested in hearing about and she immediately noted that in our file. After our meeting we opted to complete the NIPT to have a more accurate screen result.
This little gem is Hope Elizabeth Adele, and she is the love of our lives!
Hope was diagnosed with Down Syndrome when I was 12 weeks pregnant. I was terrified, but already loved that little life so much.
After a horrible visit to the Geneticist, I left and instantly knew her name would be Hope. Hope is what the world needs, hope is what our family needs, and most definitely what I needed.
During my 20-week scan, it was noted that she may have issues with her heart and that she had hydrops. So off to the High Risk clinic we travelled, even more terrified.
After 8 weeks, all the fluid in her tummy was gone and as far as they could tell, her heart looked great! She was already a strong, brave warrior.
I was so thankful I had my pregnancy to deal with the emotions that come with a diagnosis, because by the time I went into labour I was completely ready to love her for who she was, and who she would grow to become. Hope was born on February 14th at 37 weeks and instantly became the pride and joy of our family. I looked into her gorgeous almond shaped eyes and fell madly in love. Hope is all things good in this world.
Hey everyone, my name is Kristin. I am 25 and from Deseronto, Ontario.
Welcome to our journey;
My boyfriend (Derek) and I were both 22 when we began ttc. Due to medical problems I was told if I ever was to conceive on my own, it would be a miracle. Little did I know at the time how much those words would mean to us in our future.
Eleven long months had passed, we were one month away from being given the okay to see a fertility specialist when it happened, our “miracle”.
At the time, my boyfriend and I both worked night shifts, I rushed home to take that test, expecting the worst but praying for the best. Immediately, two pink lines! I sat there just staring and rubbing my eyes thinking my head was playing tricks on me from being so tired, but sure enough, 2 more tests later, reality set in and we were over the moon!
I couldn’t sleep until I had spoke to my family doctor and they set up my blood work.
WHAT A POSITIVE EXPERIENCE RECEIVEING A PRENATAL DIAGNOSIS OF DOWN SYNDROME LOOKS LIKE: HOW TO FRAME THE MESSAGE
In the beginning, there were only pieces of understanding, and we had yet to put together the puzzle to see the bigger picture. It began with an unexpected call from our midwife. An affront. A soft marker announcing the possibility of Down syndrome – Down syndrome? Uncertainty, shock, doubt, fleeting moments of glass because – what a caring and compassionate big sister our first-born would become! Sadness and fear – fear? Of what? Or of whom? I later ask myself. Of the unknown. Fragments of worry stab at my chest every day we do not know. Waiting. Until we know for sure, we don’t know. The circularity of this thought is, by definition, insanity. A blood test, a repeat ultrasound. We still don’t know, more waiting. A scheduled appointment at the Genetics Clinic in the hospital to discuss the results. In person. This is a life we are talking about. The baby’s and ours.
A genetic counsellor leads us into a sterile room. It’s been two weeks, and we still don’t know. She fumbles, “the ultrasound images look good to me, from what I can see,” she leans in conspiratorially, “nothing here suggests Down syndrome.” She doesn’t know. Anything