24 hours later, I received the call at home from the gynecologist.
Your baby has an extra chromosome and it’s a girl."
It was blurted out so fast. I was on my own hearing this news. They had told me that we would be called into the office when the results were back, however that didn't happen. It was a soul-less phone call with no support around me.
I can’t even begin to explain the pain I felt, the noise that came from deep inside of me was primal, something I had never heard before and hope not to again. Now I know it was a cry of grief for the perfect girl I had always dreamt of. I cried that I had been blessed with a girl and cried for the child having Down syndrome.
We then had our 19-week scan at the Townsville hospital. The ultrasound showed that our daughter who we had already decided would take my deceased Grandmother’s name; Isabella Jane; had two holes in her heart. The Gynecologist discussed Abortion with us… It wasn’t even discussed about proceeding with this pregnancy. What was he thinking? I was 19 weeks pregnant and already loved my child just as much as my two boys.
I saw the look in my husband eyes as he watched the screen. He was devastated when we saw the holes. I just had this numb feeling and kept saying “She will beautiful and it will all be ok.” I needed to reassure him that it WAS going to be ok. ..Yes she will have Down syndrome and YES she will have a heart operation but she will be ok!! She is our daughter and there’s nothing stopping me from doing everything I can to make sure she is ok. That’s when the lioness took over; no one was going to take our girl away.
There was no way I was losing my girl! I am a believer that what you are given is part of your life’s journey. Everything is just meant to be… I felt if we chose to abort Bella it would destroy me and maybe our marriage, as I’m sure my heart would never heal.
An inner strength that day came over me as my husband and I held each other outside the hospital as I told him it’s all going to be ok. She will be beautiful and we will get through this...
At 27 weeks pregnant, we relocated back to Melbourne where my family live. My pregnancy was beautiful. I had the usual nauseas/tiredness for the first 12 weeks same as with the boys and then I felt great. I embraced my pregnancy and listened to meditation cd’s about meeting my newborn baby. I didn’t know how I would feel when I first saw Bella but I already knew she would change our lives and she would be beautiful.
Bella was born only one week early on the 10th day of the 10th month in 2010, a healthy 8 pound 2 ounces.
Bella’s birth was textbook - Waters broke and two hours later she was born naturally. I will never forget when they passed her up to us. Her beautiful big eyes stared deep into mine and then across to Darryl,
I was lost in those eyes… A moment I will never forget.
An excerpt from Sami Steff from 'Made Beautiful by Scars - real women's stories"
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