Thursday, March 15, 2012

3 Years Later: Someone Else

March 17th will be 3 years since first hearing that Maddie would have Spina Bifida. Three years since receiving that phone call that changed everything. In that moment I felt as if my world would never be the same. I was so completely broken, that letting myself go there…even now, is still difficult. It’s difficult…but not for the reasons it used to be. Now, it’s hard for me to remember the thoughts that consumed me then, because I realize how wrong I was. I often wish I could go back and somehow shake myself out of the depression that robbed me of so much joy in my pregnancy. Just to go and tell that girl “You can do this!” “Everything is gonna be ok.” If I could have looked into our future, and seen what an amazing little girl Maddie would be, and how truly happy our life is, I would have saved myself so much stress. I wouldn’t have cried myself to sleep for more nights than I care to remember. I would have loved my baby girl, and looked forward to meeting her, instead of worrying so much. I would have focused on everything that was right, instead of wondering how things had gone so wrong. I can’t go back there and undo what’s done. I can’t take away the thoughts and prayers that I am ashamed to have prayed. What I can do is take every opportunity to let the world see, that the things that make my daughter “special” have nothing to do with “special needs”…That her laugh is often the highlight of my day…and that every parent should be so lucky to be blessed with a little girl like this.

I often reflect back to the beginning around this time of year…I remember the emotions like it was yesterday. So you can imagine my surprise when just a week before our D-day rolled around, my Doctor’s office calls again. But this time it was someone else. Someone else had received that dreaded phone call. Someone else saw their dreams fall apart. Someone else felt broken, and felt their baby girl was broken too. My heart ached for her. The nurse asked if she could put us in contact, and I said “absolutely”. My phone didn’t ring, and my heart sank. I knew what she was feeling. I knew she wouldn’t call. I remembered my unanswered prayers…they all involved setting my girl free from a life of pain and suffering. I needed this woman to know, it isn’t a life of pain and suffering at all…It’s everything I ever dreamed it could be. I emailed her my blog, and she saw my Maddie. She saw our crazy, normal life. She saw a happy family, with special needs, that wouldn’t trade our life for anything. She saw hope…and what looked like the end, suddenly became a beginning. So three years later, we’ve come full circle. Another sweet baby girl will come into this world and face all its challenges head on. Another family will be changed…for the better. And someone else won’t have to cry anymore.

Sometimes I lose sight of the big picture. Sometimes I forget how we got here, and how our life was before. Our life is great today, and Maddie is doing awesome. We’ve settled into a comfortable routine that involves preschool, therapy, soccer, church, and so much more. SB doesn’t play the role it used to play…so it’s easy to forget. But moments like these, where I actually see how our journey can make a difference to another, and I remember. I remember how D-day rocked my world. I remember how desperate I was for answers, and how much it hurt to breathe. And I hope I always remember…. Because even though that kind of pain is a distant memory for me, for someone else, the journey is just beginning, and they need to know, “You can do this, and it’s gonna be ok.”


  1. Beautiful post Selina! Thanks so much for sharing. It is so very true. We all remember that day like it was yesterday, but it is so true that our experiences have changed our view point so much from that point. It is a reminder to me to keep sharing. To keep sharing about how special our kids are for so many other reasons than SB. Give that special little girl of yours a big hug from her Michigan friends!

  2. So beautiful, so true. I often get mad at myself for those four months, too. But then I wonder without that pain and fear, would we be able to recognize just how good we have it now? You have to see night to appreciate day, you know? I'm so so so happy to hear that you were able to reach out to that family. It's so hard to connect when you're just starting out. It's like admitting that it might be real.


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