During this past pregnancy (as well as all the others) when people would ask me "do you know what you are having?" or "is the baby a boy or a girl?", it was typically followed with, "just as long as it is healthy". I would nod my head in agreement because what else are you supposed to say? It could get awkward really quickly if the next words spoken were, "What if the baby is not?". Yet honestly, what if it's not? I have been wondering to myself recently what exactly does a person mean when they say those words. I can assume each person who makes the comment has a different reason as to why they have said those words, but really, what do they mean?
Me personally after having a child who ended up under the category of "what if the baby is not healthy", I can tell you I am not offended by the phrase itself; but during this last pregnancy the words took on a new meaning. I am not ashamed to admit that I said "as long as he is healthy" aloud to anyone who asked me the gender question. I know in a way that not every mother does what it means when your child falls under the other category. I have lived in a hospital, my house is filled with medical supplies and equipment, my children excitedly yell "Sonzee's hospital" every time we drive by Phoenix children's hospital, I have watched her endure too many medical procedures, and I have had to play the "what happens if Sonzee doesn't make it this time" scenario in my head more times than I can count. While some experiences of parenting are worth repeating, these are not ones I was begging to do with another child.
No one asks for "unhealthy", but sometimes that is just the card that gets played. I promise I do not love Sonzee any differently than I do any of my children, but I also would never want to watch another child suffer like she must. It is already too much to have to wonder what her thoughts are in regards to having to endure what she must on a daily basis. Having to carry the burden of literally making life and/or death decisions on her behalf is often times just too much to handle. When strangers would say "as long as the baby is healthy" my mind would of course turn to Sonzee. Her almost three years has been filled with a mixture of joyous occasions and challenges, tears and some smiles, fear and hope, and missed milestones and completed inchstones. It has been a roller coaster of emotions and events all along the way...and still I wonder when someone says "as long as the baby is healthy" what if the baby is not?
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