Tomorrow is two years since D-Day.
Two years ago, D-day meant so many things to me. Diagnoses Day...The day my doctor said words that would change everything. March 17, 2009 was the day we found out about Madison's spina bifida, and aside from the diagnoses, D-day has come to mean many different things in the past two years.
It was such a hopeless, frightening time for me. I remember wondering if I would ever laugh again...or if the pain in my chest was ever going to end. I felt like I was in mourning...but I couldn't quite explain what had been lost. I mourned the loss of a dream...the loss of the life I had hoped for...for Maddie, for Mason, and for me and Chris.
A feeling of acceptance, but disappointment at the hand we had been dealt. Knowing my little girl would have struggles and pain that I could not take away, was more than disappointing for me. I wanted to protect her from everything, and I felt like I was failing her, because I hadn't been able to protect her from this. Life can be tough, and people can be cruel, and I knew I wouldn't be able to protect her from that either. The disappointment was overwhelming.
After the initial shock we were faced with a decision...What to do next? Although terminating the pregnacny was an option we were given, it was never something we could have considered. I have very strong beliefs about the sanctity of life, and I knew that regardless of her condition, Madison was still a precious, little life, and worth fighting for. We decided to join the MOMS trial...a clinical study for babies diagnosed with SB.
During all of this, I was desperately searching for answers. I spent many sleepless nights on the computer trying to learn anything and everything I could about Spina Bifida. I don't recommend this. There is SO much bad information out there, and most of the time it left me more confused and frightened. The day I discovered Babycenter was the day I discovered hope. This group of parents saved me in every way possible. They caught me when I was falling, they lifted me when I was down, and they encouraged me to get back up when I didn't have the strength to move. I will forever be grateful to these amazing parents who continue to give me hope, comfort, and answers when I need them most.
Two years later, this day means so much more to me. My life is not the same as it was before D-Day...It's so much better. It is fuller, and more complete...and I take nothing for granted. That day, and the two years since, have changed my perspective completely. D-Day doesn't mean all the things it used to mean...Today it means more.
It means Devotion.
I am completely devoted to this girl...
It means Determination.
She shows me on a daily basis that anything is possible.
It means Delight.
How could I possibly feel anything but pure delight when I see these two faces...
Two years ago, I listened as my doctors told me how devastating this was...How my daughter would be mentally delayed, paralyzed, and possibly stillborn. What they should have told me was that she would be the most amazing little girl I have ever laid eyes on...And that my little boy would develop such a tender heart, and an appreciation for the things that make he and Maddie different...and that the bond between Chris and I would grow stronger and deeper through adversity. There's not a day that goes by that I don't wish I could take this from Maddie, but the newfound perspective, and the love and strength that continue to grow are unexpected treasures that I feel so fortunate to have found.