Welcome to Our House - The Analogy ©

Having a baby is special. For some, it’s a lifelong dream, for others, a wonderful surprise. Either way, many of us have thought about taking this journey and whether it’s planned or a pleasant surprise, we all have preconceived ideas about what our child will look and be like. But what if it isn’t what we planned or expected? This is a short story I have written for parents who have or are expecting an exceptionally special child.

Welcome to our House – An analogy

After many months of dreaming, you finally decide it’s time. You are going to build that perfect house of your dreams. You have saved and saved, and now it’s time to put your plan into action. You find a wonderful, perfect piece of land in the city. It’s exactly what you are looking for – because it’s the plan that everyone talks about. You envision the all brick house sitting on luscious green grass, surrounded by a white picket fence. Inside is a marble foyer leading into a family room with beautiful oak hardwood floors. Granite lines the kitchen counter tops and there is an island sink in the middle. Upstairs has four perfect bedrooms and the master bedroom has an ensuite bathroom and an enormous walk-in closet, of course. It’s truly a dream come true, and it’s only a matter of time. You purchase the land and think to yourself, in nine short months, you will have it all.

But suddenly your agent calls to tell you, the land is not properly zoned, and the city has not approved it for building your perfect home. They have instead, given you land in the country, where an old country home sits. You are absolutely devastated, your dreams vanishing right before your eyes. You know you can’t back out now, you need a place to live, and despite it not being what you wanted, you know that somehow you will manage and that you can continue on.

You tell everyone what has happened, and everyone is disappointed, some even offering their condolences. You know that everyone else has a nice city home, and that was what you had planned, but you have to come to terms with the fact that you must learn to live in the country.

You go to see the property every month until closing and something funny happens. You start to fall in love with the place. The air is fresh, it’s peaceful and serene. There’s a pond on the land, and the house, though not a new all brick home, is quaint, and has lots of hidden potential. You soon realize it’s not a awful place, it’s just a different place. It’s slower paced than the city, less noisy and flamboyant, but it’s beautiful none the less. And in the process, you soon realize you may even get to meet some new and wonderful neighbours.

Its closing day and you suddenly find yourself full of anticipation, but you are still a little worried. After all, it isn’t what you had originally hoped for, and the house may need some repairs. But you are determined to accept it, and tackle everything one step at a time. You open the front door, and suddenly you are thrilled with what you see. The house is lovely, and has lots of character. The rooms are smaller but it’s decorated with beautiful attention and detail. The kitchen has marble instead of granite, and the bathroom has a soaker tub instead of a Jacuzzi. There isn’t a walk-in closet in sight, but the rooms all come with an indescribable view. Somehow, you just know that it was always meant to be and that this is now home.

This is my analogy of what it will be like for people who discover that they will be caring for a baby with Down syndrome. For us, it is not a terrible place to be, it is a journey full of surprises, milestones and discovery like any other child. And as the story suggests, sometimes it’s only a matter of ‘point of view’, and surprisingly, once you have been there, you don’t want to be anywhere else. The journey, like all others doesn’t come without some bumps in the road, but once you find your way, it’s all about the place you discovered, in most cases - quite by random chance
Author: Sandi Graham-McWade, Copyright

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Saturday, June 5, 2010

My Journal - Week 42 (05Jun10)

Some sad, sad news....

I always think to myself, I will only post good things here in my blog.  But since this is our story of our journey I realize I must not omit the negative things as they are just as a part of life as the positive.

Today we confirmed (after 3 weeks of ultrasounds and confirmations) that my pregnancy is not viable.  There has been no fetal heartbeat after 2 and 1/2 weeks ago.  We were hoping for the best and yet expecting the worst.  Unfortunately, nothing has changed from the first bit of bad news of not being able to see a heartbeat that was once seen 3 weeks ago and was extremely low.  (We were warned back then that this would likely end in a loss but we tried to remain hopeful despite the warning.)  We are absolutely devastated and are beside our selves for the most part.  But we have a little boy who needs our attention and of course is none the wiser (which is a tiny blessing I suppose).

The saddest thing for me at the moment is that I am unable to give Hunter his sibling that we tried so hard for five months to give him.  Hopefully there will be another chance, and it wont take us as long as it did the 2nd time around.

I am scheduled to go the hospital on Monday at 11am, for one last ultrasound (which always is done before any ERPC - Evacuation of Retained Products from Conception).  I know that in my heart, things happen for a reason, fate is destiny and what doesn't kill you only makes you stronger.  But as my one friend said, for what has happened to you in your life time, you should be bullet proof by now.... He wasn't kidding.

I am NOT sorry that I told everyone so early that I was expecting, in fact I am glad I did.  I do honestly believe those who know can be my support in this difficult and sad time, and I have had much support from those of you who knew what has been happening in these last three weeks.  I am only sorry that we all have to endure this sad news.  I wish it were better, and I wish that we didn't have to grieve - but it is a natural process.

We will try again, because we have a goal and that is to make this family complete and to have someone there who will be able to look out for Hunter as he would for them, when we are gone.  No one should be alone.

All my thanks and love to those who know and those who have been there.

Sandi, John and Hunter.


  1. I am so sad for you. I know what this meant to you and how hurt you must be. I am praying for you all. You are great parents with hunter and now he will give you the strength to get through this.
    Love you all

  2. There are no words to tell you what I feel in my heart right this moment for you both sweetheart, I know that you have wanted a sibling for Hunter for a long time and after trying so long, it looked like it would happen. I can feel the pain you are feeling and will feel for a long time. You are all in my prayers, in my heart, I love you all so very much, huge hugss honey.. call night or day, I'm here for you sweetie. All my love always, mom (McWade) xoxoxoxooxoxxoxo

  3. So sorry for your loss. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  4. Oh, I am so sorry, I have been here before and there are just no words anyone can say to make you feel any better. Praying for you.

  5. Hi

    I am so sorry for you John and hunter and ur family. I can say as I have been through exactly what you r going thru how difficult and painful this experience is. I want you to believe the words you wrote about next time as both personally and professionally I have seen these miracles occur when we are not expecting...in my case jaidyn. I know that you are one of the strongest women I know and I am proud as a women and a mom as well as a developmentalist to have the utmost honour to get the opportunity to meet and work with you John and especially that cute and special little man! I know there is nothing that I can do to make things a little easier for you, but know as always you guys are in my heart and my thought. I am out tonight at a function but if you want to talk tomorrow give me a call, I am here for anything you John or Hunter may need. Again thinking of you


  6. Sorry to hear of your loss Sandi. I know it must be very disappointing for you. Hopefully you will succeed in your quest and knowing you, this will only be a temporary set back.
    Good luck and may the pain soon subside.

  7. Sandi so sorry to hear the sad news. A delay in a sibling for Hunter may be better both for Hunter and the new member when it happens again. Right now Hunter needs you a lot. A second infant would demand some of the attention that Hunter needs now. The more Hunter matures the easier it will be to manage his needs. Once walking and talking (age 3 or so) he will likely help you raise the sibling and have an awesome bond.Maybe that's what was meant to happen. Don't rush it. Hunter needs you a lot.

  8. Sandi,
    I'm sorry to hear about your loss. This must be a very emotional time for you and John. Just take some time to grieve. Our thoughts are with you.

  9. Hi Sandi:

    Sorry to hear of your loss. As you said, everything happens for a reason. What is meant to be, will be. In the meantime, I wish you, John and Hunter all the best.

    Take care of yourself.


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