Friday, April 27, 2012

Wants and wishes

A few minutes ago Tom told me about an article he was reading about parents who were given an unbelievably short time to enjoy their baby.  As the result of a terminal disease, the parents were told they could expect to only have their baby for a little more than one more year.  The parents in turn created a bucket list for their daughter. 

After wiping the tears from my eyes and being told I wasn't allowed to actually read the article, for obvious reasons, I started thinking, in a less morbid way, about what kinds of things other parents think about as wishes for their kids. 

I've written before about things I have wished for Tera and thinking too much about things like this is exactly what made her diagnosis so hard to accept at the beginning.  It's not as difficult anymore because I realize that not all of those things have to change.

We are overplanners.  We spent weeks researching our first vacuum cleaner (and it paid off, it was great).  We read reviews on the most minor of purchases, we do comparison shopping, we subscribe to Consumer Reports, and we check forums.  Before I got pregnant we knew we wanted to be due in March and that I would take the rest of the year off.  I had my bag packed for the hospital six weeks before I was due.  I kind of had a birth plan, but we were very flexible with it and fortunately I wasn't that hung up on it because it would have been thrown right out the window when we found out I was ready to push ten minutes after being admitted.  One might have thought given this information that we would have opted for prenatal testing, but we didn't and I don't regret it for a second.  That did of course result in what was probably the biggest surprise of our lives. 

In hindsight, here's why I'm glad I didn't know anything ahead of time: had we known that Tera would have DS, I would have spent months worrying and trying to plan for something that we just wouldn't have known enough about.  I might have expected all the worst case scenarios about health and development and I wouldn't know that those things wouldn't be as scary as they might have seemed at the time.  And I wouldn't have known that I could want even more for her than I ever imagined. 

Here are the things that I want Tera to do: have a best friend, get her nails done with me, go shopping with me, help her dad and odd-father work on car stereos, help her dad with home projects, fly on a plane to visit her grandparents and aunt, have a crush on a boy, go on a date, go to Disney World, visit the Hockey Hall of Fame, drive a car, love hockey and figure skating and watch it with me like I used to with my grandma when I was younger, bake Christmas cookies with her YiaYia and I, meet regularly for coffee with her Nani and I, go shopping and have sleepovers with her aunts, learn to play guitar and play with her uncle and grandpas, play video games with her uncles and dad, love school, learn to ice skate, go to Blackhawk games with her grandpa, explain to her classmates the difference between authentic and replica jerseys, love to read, love math, learn another language, have more patience than I do and be able to just sit down and watch a whole movie with her dad without doing something else at the same time.  I know there so many more things, but I'll just have to write them down and share them later. 

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