After having two healthy babies, Azure and Matthew felt like pros delivering their third child. But the day after delivering Tori, they received the news that Tori had a heart abnormality, and probably also had Down syndrome.
We kind of felt like we were punched in the nose with boxing gloves.
The pregnancy had been uneventful. The couple had been offered prenatal testing for Down syndrome, which is the most common chromosome abnormality to result in a live birth. But Azure had declined testing, reasoning that they would not manage the pregnancy any differently if their baby had Down syndrome. And while this was still true, they just weren’t prepared for this sudden departure from their expectations. The Jensens didn’t know what to expect now.
In this interview with Azure and Matt, we’re going to talk about what life is like with Tori, what adjustments the family has had to make, and what a blessing it is to have a child in your life who makes friends for you.
It is because of Tori that they have met people they never would have met otherwise. Through this journey, they have learned to connect with people in a different way. Tori is very special and I know you’re going to enjoy meeting her family.
Many pregnant women will receive a diagnosis that their baby has Down syndrome before delivery. Some, like Azure, receive the news after delivery. But however you receive this information, it’s important to be cared for throughout the process.
Here are some pointers to keep in mind, whether you’re receiving or giving this diagnosis:
It’s best if the diagnosis is delivered to you by someone you know and trust, like your own pediatrician or obstetric provider.
If possible, both parents should be present when receiving this news, as well as any family members that you want to be there.
It’s also important to have your baby with you in the room. She or he should be referred to by their name.
As physicians and medical providers, we must remember not to say “I’m sorry” when delivering this diagnosis. We recommend instead saying, “Congratulations! And..”
Finally, if you’re a new mom, a mom-to-be, or an open-nester, you deserve to pamper yourself. Have you grabbed your free copy of my Self-Care Guide for busy moms? If not, you can grab that below.
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