Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Dreams Change

In a few short weeks, little miss Addison will be turning the very old sounding number of TWO.

These past two years (plus her pregnancy) have changed me into a much different person than I was that first moment that I realized that I was pregnant. I used to write about that a lot on here- my struggles, my fears.

Many of you wrote encouraging comments to me and I will forever be grateful to you for your support.

The journey of a special needs mom is not an easy one. This blog has helped me not only learn to cope through therapeutic writing, but learn to love, love, LOVE this journey of being Addison's mother.

For those of you who might be new here, her first year of life was not easy for her physically (she had three surgeries, nine months of oxygen, a g-tube, a long NICU stay). In addition, her prenatal diagnosis was one of the worst things that I have ever suffered through.

I don't write about it much anymore...because it all seems far away. Distant. It's hard to pay attention to the angry waves a few miles out in the ocean when you are busy admiring the feel of the wet sand between your toes, the little laps of water catching the bottom of your feet, the beautiful shells begging to be picked up and treasured.

But in the last couple of months it has occurred to me that while I am ending that part of my journey- someone else is just beginning it. While I am hopelessly in love with my daughter sporting the extra chromosome, some others were just given their amnio results that make them feel as though they were robbed of every last chance of happiness due to this "extra chromosome deformity". While I am luxuriously enjoying the beautiful shells in my life now, someone else is stuck out in the angry waves- drowning.

And while I don't have a magical pill for you so that all of a sudden life is full of rainbow eating kittens and pastel covered marshmallows floating from the sky instead of that car-crushing hail you're currently experiencing...I can be completely honest with you. I can give you the assurance that you're not alone. I can share exactly how I felt when I was there, allowing you to experience the journey with me from there to here.

In celebration of Addison's 2nd birthday, and to formally close this chapter of my life:
(click on's a link)

I have written- in more detail than ever before all about her diagnosis, her birth, her NICU stay...

and then I compiled all of the posts that I wrote these past two years while sorting through becoming a "special needs mom". Her first heart surgery- her milestone celebrations- coming off of oxygen- having doubts- falling in's all there.

It was long (60 pages) so that it was much bigger than a blog post, or two blog posts, or even three. So I created an ebook and made it official by putting it up for sale on Amazon.

This is my way of emotionally saying goodbye to the grief and fear and continuing my life of a very normal mom to a very normal daughter.

It is also my way to help put out there what it's really like to those moms who are learning earlier than ever their child's diagnosis and being encouraged to choose abortion.

It would be easiest to keep these painful thoughts and emotions bottled up for my own private memory, but on the off-chance that perhaps it would help that one mom going through the same thing....

...or the "normal" parent wondering what the other side is truly like...

I offer my version of a life boat, braving those angry waves one more time because of those just entering the churning waters.

And in order for those who truly need to hear what is in these e-pages to know about this...please share this book. You don't know who it is around you who just received the news and is considering terminating her pregnancy rather than be stuck with a "different" child. You don't know who is privately struggling, bitter and resentful that God made a mistake when creating her child. You don't know who needs to realize that her child is perfect even if that child doesn't line up to what they always dreamed of in parenting. Sometimes the ones grieving the most are the ones who are most quiet.

My dreams have changed these past two years. Sometimes the things that make us the happiest are the things that we think we don't want- fight against, even.

Read here about my changed dreams. (you can download to your computer if you don't have a Kindle)

and thank advance.

(Note: This is NOT the book that I have been talking about forever. This is a side project that I did just for Addison's birthday...more on the "big" book later)



  1. I love your way with words and your insight - bought a copy and can't wait to read it!

  2. CONGRATS ON WRITING THIS EBOOK! You are amazing. This is going to help so many people. I can't wait to read it.

  3. I intend to buy & to share. Though I do not have a special needs child, I am inspired by your honesty & strength. May God continue to get the glory for all He is doing in your life & family.

  4. I was SO excited that I purchased your e-book immediately... without a kindle... and now I can't figure out how to get it on my computer!! This is killing me, I just want to read it already :)

  5. I just bought your book and can't wait for bedtime to start reading!

  6. free nooks etc are available for one's computer so do not let the lack of a kindle prevent you frm purchasing her ebook

  7. Congrats!! You are such an amazing person and mother.

  8. cool! but...but....I have a Nook not a Kindle...what do I do?

  9. Shauna, just discovered that you can download free kindle apps for your computer, if you can't figure out how to use your nook to read this. Check out :

    Thanks "Anonymous" for the tip :)

  10. Awesome! What a great way to remember, to minister, to encourage.

  11. What an awesome thing Deanna. If I can figure out how to get nook or kindle for my computer I will read it :)

  12. Thank you, Deanna.

  13. I have a kindle and accidently sent it to my husbands Ipad, guess what I've been borrowing all night....
    Seriously it's a good thing you don't live closer or I might make you hang out with me. As a matter of fact if your ever in VA.... bring the family by! Your such an amazing person and of course I adore your babies! Hope you sell millions of copies.

  14. I am so happy about this project. Finding your blog has been such a blessing to me, dear one.

  15. Awesome!! I just downloaded Kindle for my PC, thanks to Bethie!! I shall read Dreams Change this weekend.

  16. I shared the Amazon link on my Facebook page. I enjoy reading your blog so much, but especially love the pictures and cute sayings you add to them.

  17. I finished your book last night and I enjoyed it so much! You were able to perfectly express how it feels to have a child with Down syndrome and all the health problems that come with it. I totally relate to the evolution of emotions from sadness, worry, and grief to happiness, joy, and celebration. Because of Ben, my dreams have changed too! So thank you for your book. I've recommended it to all my friends!

  18. Wonderful job & congratulations on your ebook! I loved it! I found your blog when you were pregnant with Carter and have enjoyed reading about your adventures with Chubbs. Can't wait to read your upcoming book too :)

  19. Wow, your book is just absolutely amazing. You and Addison are changing more lives than you can imagine.


Thanks for reading about my Everything and Nothing. I would love to hear from you!