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Feeling Concerned...Mama Gut is Worried

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 

So my mother's intuition has been fairly strongly suggesting that *something* is off this whole pregnancy (nearly 23 weeks)...about three weeks ago I had a dream that it was a boy (before we had the ultrasound showing that it is a boy) and that he had Down Syndrome. And the last couple of days I've had that same wave of feeling. 


The thought of having a baby with Down Syndrome doesn't bother me at all, but it would definitely change the choices that I'm considering for work after the baby is born.  I'm currently deciding between going down to half-time working from home and going back to the office with DH staying home full time...if baby boy has Down Syndrome I'll definitely be a full time SAHM instead of working at all, at least for the first few years. 


What I'm wondering is this: has anyone else ever had a stong intuititive sense about anything like this and been right? I won't be getting an amnio or anything else like that to find out for sure before the birth.  Also, does anyone else have a child with Down Syndrome who is an attachment parent, and what is that like?

I feel weird really thinking about this, but something in me is driving me to find information...just like I was driven to seek out information about attachment parenting before my high needs/high energy DD was born (she definitely prepared me for her personality while still in the womb!). I trust my gut as often as I can, and it doesn't usually steer me wrong.  Any one else in the same boat?

post #2 of 20

Trust your instinct. It won't hurt to have that type of knowledge "just in case" there is something not quite right. Hopefully you won't need to use it. Regardless, I would think that AP would be ideal for that type of babe as with any other babe. Was anything tagged on U/S?

post #3 of 20

I agree. Trust your instinct and prepare if that would make you feel more comfortable, but I'd try not to worry too much about it either. Though it doesn't seem like you're TOO worried or stressed about it. I'd also figure out all possible scenarios regarding your work situation, but I'd wait on making any final decisions until baby was born and I knew for sure. I imagine AP would be beneficial for parenting a child with Down Syndrome based on stories my sister tells me of her experience as a Special Needs Teaching Assistant, but I don't have any personal experience (or know of anyone who does as a parent). 


I bet you would find more answers/help by posting in the Special Needs area. 

post #4 of 20
Thread Starter 
Thanks ladies smile.gif I'm really not worried about it per se, just feeling like I need information. I do feel like I need to read about it, but will have to consciously let go of it for the rest of the pregnancy I think so as not to be anxious about it at the birth.

I've read a few times already where a mama "just knew" during pregnancy and was right, so was just wondering if anyone here had any experiences like that too. I don't tend to be a worrier in general, and am never a worst case scenario expecter, so this all feels a little weird!

I will love this little boy no matter how he looks or learns or developes, "normal" or special needs, so he certainly doesn't have to worry about that!
post #5 of 20

I can understand your need for information. It seems like our women's intuition is on a whole new level while pregnant and giving birth. I don't have experience personally with this, but agree it's always good to research and trust your instincts. I don't know if this will be helpful, but I did recently read the birth story of Dean, and thought that that contained lots of information (along with an update on the last page that shows him at a year old). She is definitely an attachment parent, and he seems to be very healthy- I imagine because of it! Through reading those responses, I saw this link posted of another woman's birth story of her down's baby. This woman actually writes in much more detail, and it's a bit gut-wrenching, in my opinion, since she really lays all her emotions out there. She actually wrote a book about her experience dealing with downs syndrome in the first year of her daughter's life. I don't know that she's very AP, or anything. So, this is just anecdotal type of information of how these women dealt with their births emotionally, and neither of them seemed to suspect anything beforehand, although I've certainly read of others who suspected problems of some kind and there was indeed something wrong. Anyway, so maybe not helpful, but I thought I'd send it your way just in case!

post #6 of 20
Thread Starter 
Thank you Tbutton, I'll read through those, I was looking for things like that actually. I appreciate it!
post #7 of 20

I've felt something off my entire pregnancy.  At first I thought it was Down's perhaps but they didn't find any markers for it on the U/S.  I dunno what, now, but I still can't shake the feeling that something is up...  It's weird.  They haven't found a single thing wrong with me or him/her really, but it's hard to shake the feeling.  We'll see what happens, I suppose...

post #8 of 20

Also wanted to say that I'm not panicking or anything... not even really super worried.  I just want to make sure I'm prepared, but I dunno what to be prepared FOR, so I think that's the hardest part of it!

post #9 of 20
From the moment I found out I was pregnant I just knew in my heart something was wrong and unfortunately I was right! greensad.gif I told my DH on many occasions how I felt and he tried to be supportive, but he really just felt I was being paranoid. I KNEW it wasn't paranoia. 20 week scan showed multiple markers for trisomy 18 and amnio confirmed it. I'm absolutely heartbroken. greensad.gif
post #10 of 20

So sorry, love. guilty.gif

post #11 of 20

Love_r4ks, I'm so sorry.  I hope you have lots of support around you right now.


Clarasmama, I read your post the other day and it has stuck with me.  I actually was going to come on here and also recommend Kelle Hampton's blog post about the birth of her daughter and her reaction in the first few minutes/hours/days to finding out that she had Downs Syndrome.  As the pp mentioned, it's very raw and pretty much a guaranteed cry-fest when you read it (at least if you are anything like me!) but she goes on to just fall so deeply in love with her daughter and her blog really does show the joy that she finds in her kids. 

Anyway, it sounds like you are just doing your homework, which I think is great.  I will still hope for healthy babies for everyone, but it sounds like your new little one will be lucky to have you as his/her mama no matter what.  :)

post #12 of 20
Thread Starter 

Love_r4ks, I do hope you have lots of support right now too, I think it's a hard thing to process no matter when you find out.  You have time to figure things out before hand though, I hope the rest of your pregnancy and delivery are smooth so you can get started on good footing with your new little one.


I did read Kelle Hampton's blog post, and sat there crying through almost the entire thing. I looked through some of the other posts too, and Nella is just so beautiful! A precious little girl for sure. I told DH the other night that I've been having recurring feelings of Down Syndrome for this baby, not thoughts, to try and differentiate for him that I'm not sitting here dwelling on the fact that our baby might not be "normal" but that instead it's like a wave of feeling that I can't shake.  He still said I should just try to think more positive thoughts...silly man.  I'm not worried myself, I was actually more concerned that he would have a negative reaction especially if at the birth it turns out that my gut was right and I never told him what I felt.  At least now he'll know that if he wants to look into any information on his own he can, and if he doesn't that's okay too.


At yoga yesterday my intention for the practice was "I love you EXACTLY the way you are," and it was wonderful.  I have been really enjoying my prenatal yoga class in general, but it was especially nice yesterday.  I think I'll ask my midwives if they have ever delivered babies with D.S. and what we might need to be prepared for, and then let the issue rest.  We probably have another 19 weeks to go (my mama gut also thinks this boy will go 15 days past the "due date"), so we'll spend our time getting everything ready like we normally would.  Making baby blankets and furniture for the kids' room and all that stuff.  No matter what happens he will certainly be loved, and I hope he's a cuddle bug because I didn't get a cuddly one the first time!

post #13 of 20
Love rks I am so sorry to hear your update. That is heart breaking. At least you have a chance to really process everything and make the necessary adjustments to support yourself, baby and family.
post #14 of 20

Oh Love rks- hugs and hugs and hugs.  What a hard place you are in!

post #15 of 20
Love r4ks, just wanted to tell you that my heart goes out to you, and you are in my prayers!!
post #16 of 20

Just wanted to offer some support and to say that one of my biggest challenges as a mother, doula and as a human is to know the difference between intuition and fear.  It sounds like what you are talking about is intuition but you also could be off intuition is funny like that, your boy might need you to love him exactly how he is but he might be quote "normal".  If you feel like you or/and your partner would do better with knowing ahead of time you could do a screening which is a blood test and not conclusive but might help you make a decision about more invasive testing or just waiting.  PS I have known moms that downs does NOT show up on ultrasound so just know that it can happen.  Here is some info best to you mama and all the mamas that have posted.

Screening and Diagnosis

Screening Tests During Pregnancy

Various screening tests can help identify the possibility of Down syndrome. These screening tests do not provide conclusive answers but provide an indication of the likelihood of the baby having Down syndrome. The most common prenatal screening tests include:

  • Ultrasound
  • Blood tests – The results of the ultrasound are paired with blood tests.
    • First Trimester Screen – This is a two-step screening. The maternal blood is tested for two normal first-trimester proteins. Then, an ultrasound is used to look at the nuchal translucency region under the skin behind the baby’s neck. This test is done between the 11th and 14th week of pregnancy.
    • Quad Marker Screen – Maternal blood is tested for four substances that normally come from a baby’s blood, brain, spinal fluid and amniotic fluid. This test is done between the 15th and 20th weeks of pregnancy.
    • Triple Screen – During the 16th and 18th week of pregnancy a blood test can be performed which measures the quantities of three substances: Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) which is produced by the fetus, human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), and unconjugated estriol which is produced by the placenta. In determining the results of the test, health care providers take into account the mother’s age, weight and ethnicity.
post #17 of 20

Oh shoot you are probably farther along than me here I was looking at the tests thinking the timing was right...sorry but I bet they could still screen.

post #18 of 20

Thanks so much, mamas! hug.gif  These last few weeks have been incredibly hard, but I do have a lot of support from wonderful family and friends. Yes, I'm so glad we chose to have the amnio done so  we could be better prepared for everything that is to come. It was so heartbreaking to tell the other kids, my 11 year old is having a really hard time. mecry.gif I know the odds are not in our favor and that this little guy will probably not live for long after birth, or the 50% chance he could even be stillborn, but we chose to continue the pregnancy and cherish what little time we have with our son. stillheart.gif

post #19 of 20

love_r4ks, I am so deeply sorry this news has come to you. I wish there were words that could heal your heart and protect you from any hurt that may come in the months ahead. I know that, statistically, the outlook is not good, but also that there are no guarantees. I am so glad that you've got support of your family and friends. I hope you're able to find a support group to help you navigate it all, if you need or want it. hug2.gif

post #20 of 20
Thread Starter 

Thank you AnahataChakra, you're right, it's not fear at all (I'm not afraid of the possibility), but my intuition could be off.  It's happened before!  Sometimes it's scarily right on, and other times...well, not so much.  I do just want to be prepared for the possibility, since I never had any feelings like this at all with DD.  We are at nearly 24 weeks, and are having a homebirth so we won't be doing any blood testing, though I know some of the screens can give an inkling of what might be going on.


Love_r4ks, big hugs again.  I do believe that our children choose us as parents for a reason, whether they need to learn from us or we need to learn from them, and your little boy definitely chose you on purpose.  Hopefully you'll get to love him for a very long time, but no matter what he'll know that he is loved.

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