My youngest - Alphonse was born last year, December 27, 2012. And as many of you know, we went through a lot following his arrival. I have made a promise to keep this blog updated as much as possible about how our little boy was doing. But, I failed miserably. Nevertheless, I continued to post pictures and little updates in my Instagram and Facebook page. But the questions are still there. Some are still wondering. What happened to Alphonse? How did the surgery go? What happened after the surgery? Why does he always stick his tongue out? Does he look different?
The first few weeks after A was born have been very difficult for our family for several reasons - my recovery, my daughters and husband leaving for Singapore while A and I will have to remain in the Philippines for a few more months, A's surgery and a whole lot of routine checks he needs to undergo and his overall health condition. That was not the time for us to talk. That was the time when we were all in emotional roller coaster and we still don't know what is going to happen. But we remained strong.
The Truth That We DID NOT Hide
In light of all the questions that my family has been getting from a lot of people, I decided to write this post. But let me tell you one thing.
WE DID NOT TRY TO HIDE THE TRUTH.
YES, Alphonse was born with Trisomy 21 - otherwise known as Down Syndrome. A genetic disorder that is caused by having a third copy of chromosome 21.
It was the truth. And it was the reason why he had a congenital heart disease. It was the reason why he had to undergo surgery at an early age. It was the reason why he has a protruding tongue. It was the reason why he had hypothyroidism. It was the reason why he needed therapy and it is the reason why he will need ear tubes next month.
Why did we stay quiet? No, we never intended and we have no intention of hiding the truth about him. We just needed TIME - to grieve, breathe, accept. We learned about his condition the day after he was born. As a mom, I still cry when I recall that very moment. Four doctors came to see me to let me know that my child has a hole in his heart and that he has Down Syndrome. I was devastated. It felt like the world is about to end for me. My tears won't stop falling and I can't breathe. I just can't breathe. The first question I had was - WHY?
That day was supposedly a celebration for all of us. We finally had a baby boy after having twins! It was supposed to be the happiest time of the year and it was supposed to be the best New Year ever. Everything just turned out - DIFFERENT. My little baby is - DIFFERENT. I am overwhelmed by all the emotions I have that time. My eyes are swollen from crying but the tears won't stop. It just won't stop and in the very quiet of my every night, I always cry.
And I cried more.
And I feel hatred and anger.
Because I don't understand why. Because I didn't do anything wrong. Because this should have not happened to us.
I am angry. I don't want to talk. Because every single time that I will open my mouth, my tears will sure follow. So, I stayed silent at home after Kris and the girls have gone back to Singapore. My mom feels my pain and she tries to give me comfort but I am not ready to accept anything from anyone at that moment. What I needed, is someone who will truly understand what I am going through.
At some point in time, I got tired of being quiet and started talking to friends online. But I didn't open up to everyone just yet. I talked to only a few people and some of them offered help by introducing me to their relatives who has a child with Down Syndrome too. And then someone sent me a message in Facebook. It was Alysia, the sister of my very good friend Mandy. She shared their story to me and how she treasures her child Jesse. I have finally started to see the light. I opened up with someone who truly understands. Who has the same experience as me. Finally, I can feel the fresh air. My world is about to start again.
The anger is gone.
I cried less.
I started accepting.
My life is finally coming together again. I can finally face my baby with pride, as his mother. That day I vowed to love my son with all my heart. To fight for my son with all my might and to give my everything, to make sure that he will grow up to be a good and independent man.
I Fell In Love.
The baby in front of me has become the joy of my life and the source of my strength. I fell absolutely in love with him. He may look different to other people but to me, he's a darling and I wouldn't trade him for anything else in the world.
Our Life Changed. Permanently.
Yes, it did. And it will continue to change as we go through the process of it all. Our new life now includes Alphonse and despite all the struggles we have to face, our family promised to remain strong and to stay together. We will have a new beginning and we will come to love our new life.
And Alphonse's story is just about to begin.