Dark, Update

November 27, 2007

It was – it is – a positive screen for Down’s Syndrome. It’s a risk-assessment screen, not a diagnostic screen, so it’s not conclusive – and I know that I need to focus on the fact that it’s just about odds, that false positives happen all the time, that further testing isn’t as scary as it seems, that it could all be fine – but still, it’s not a happy thing. Not a happy thing at all. It’s a dark cloud hanging over my head now, and even though I know that dark clouds don’t always end up dumping buckets of rain or hurling thunderbolts upon your head, I still don’t like them. They block the sun. I need the sun. So badly right now, I need the sun.

I need to crawl under the blankets for a while to process this. Thank you all so much – from the bottom of my heart so much – for the endless waves of love and support.

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    Heather B. November 28, 2007 at 12:46 am

    Lots and lots of hugs for you, friend.

    Marymurtz November 28, 2007 at 12:46 am

    My dear friend gave birth to a baby boy just a year ago, and he has Down Syndrome. She sent out the most amazing and wonderful email about him immediately, and has been proactive and involved in learning as much as she can. That little boy is the light of their lives, her two older children dote on him, and he’s doing magnificently.

    It would be easy to say “Oh, I’m so sorry…” I guess I ache for those in uncertainty, for those worried that life will be hard for the baby and child and adult he or she will become. But every child, every parent, faces difficulty; some adversity is better researched than other problems, but Down Syndrome is not a death sentence. It’s not probably something a person would choose for their child, but my cousin, my friend’s son, and many others I know with Down Syndrome are amazing, funny, talented and wonderful people who enrich the world.

    All good thoughts go out to you in this uncertain time.

    Anonymous November 28, 2007 at 2:35 am

    Another lurker here, decloaking to send support and concern. I had amnio with my daughter as I was 36. I was very frightened of the test itself, but it was no big deal at all.

    Also, I support your right to choose whatever is best for you and your family. Obviously we all hope and pray that this is a false positive, but if it’s not…. I’d advise that you turn to your family and your doctor and your beliefs and spirituality, not necessarily the internet which already seems to be trying to influence your decision.

    Let us know. We’ll be praying for you.

    mo-wo November 28, 2007 at 3:10 am

    Information. It’s a bitch, eh.

    We got a jolt on our ultrasound with the nuthatch. I listened as the odds flew about and ultimately had to say.. What? You know we are not very good at math. This is too hard for us.

    We went pass/fail with the amnio… Information. Get a little and suddenly you need a lot.

    nomotherearth November 28, 2007 at 3:30 am

    Sorry I missed your earlier post till now – I really need to get on Google reader.

    I too have heard MANY stories of false positives. The testing and waiting is crazy- making though. If you need anything please let me know. I’m really close by and good at being a distraction.

    Remember, it’s always darkest right before the dawn.

    Wishful Mommy November 28, 2007 at 4:58 am

    Sending sunshine to you and Sprout…

    Lara November 28, 2007 at 6:29 am

    i have faith that everything will work out for you and the whole bad family, even if that means living a wonderfully sweet life with a special needs sprout.

    for the next few days/weeks, i’ll work hard to have faith enough for both of us.

    Kim November 28, 2007 at 7:19 am

    You know, it’s weird. This is the first time I have visited in quite some time. And here you are.

    We have a child with a genetic abnormality.

    If you have any (I mean, ANY) questions then please, please ask.

    You don’t know me from a bar of soap, but I do taste better and am far less drying for your skin.

    Thinking of you.


    Kim November 28, 2007 at 7:20 am

    I should probably qualify what I said with the information that he’s now 9 and we didn’t have any genetic testing whatsoever because at the time I was 24, but did have a CVS on my three subsequent pregnancies.

    Wright November 28, 2007 at 7:49 am

    Thinking and praying for you. I know I’m a total stranger but no one should go through this without some support.

    Veronica Mitchell November 28, 2007 at 9:09 am

    I am so sorry.

    I hope that it is a false positive.

    I hope that your baby is healthy. Even if not, that your baby brings you even more joy than you first hoped.

    -The Shiny Happy Mama- November 28, 2007 at 9:14 am

    Keeping you and the sprout in my thoughts and sending many, many hugs.

    Candygirlflies November 28, 2007 at 9:27 am

    Oh, Catherine, I am so sorry that you and your family are going through this hell of waiting and wondering…

    But hopefully the multiple stories here of false-positives will perhaps lighten your heart a tiny bit this week… It is so true that the ultrasound is simply a risk-assessment, and by no means conclusive. When my own Child Number Two’s ultrasounds looked irregular, and my doctor expressed concern, it was my dear old dad (an old-school gp) who took my hand and told me to have faith and not jump to conclusions too soon… And my little girl is now a perfectly healthy and happy six-year-old.

    My personal feeling on further screening is to look at it as a marvellous opportunity to prepare for things to come. How wonderful to be able to get a glimpse into the future, and to be able to make informed decisions.

    If I could, I would give your hand a big squeeze, Catherine. I have faith in you and Sprout!

    Wishing you love and strength– CGF xo

    BOSSY November 28, 2007 at 9:33 am

    (Bossy crawls into your room for a hug.)

    Jill November 28, 2007 at 10:26 am

    Hang in there. Take it one minute at a time. I’ve been through it and it’s debilitating.

    Take a more conclusive test as soon as humanly possible. In the meantime-if you need to crawl into bed…have someone cover for you and do it!

    Cynthia Samuels November 28, 2007 at 10:32 am

    Oh Catherine — this sucks! And of course there’s so little one can do. Someone dear to me went through this and had an amnio, then went through the next phase of waiting for the result, which were good. Even so, nobody else’s story helps, not really. All one can do is accept the love and concern of those around us (in your case so very many people) and if inclined, say, or seek from others, prayers and good thoughts. Mine will certainly be with you.

    Anonymous November 28, 2007 at 10:44 am


    I’m sorry that after months of sickness you are now facing this time of worry and fear. I can’t add any more than what’s already been said above. I’m thinking of you, all of you, and am hoping with all my might that everything turns out okay.


    Hannah November 28, 2007 at 11:53 am

    Oh lord. I can’t even read all the comments, I just don’t have the heart. I’m so sorry, the next few weeks will be rough. Keep the faith.

    Heather November 28, 2007 at 12:41 pm

    I know you’re sick with worry right now and nothing said here will change that. I just wanted to add my voice to the many that is hoping for good news and sending out good thoughts for you. Prayers, too, if you believe in them.

    sweetney November 28, 2007 at 12:44 pm

    i’m so sorry, c. much love and support to you, always.

    Bloor West Mama November 28, 2007 at 12:47 pm

    Sending lots of support, lots of hugs, lots of positive thoughts and lots of sunshine.

    Laural Dawn November 28, 2007 at 12:54 pm

    I’m sorry. I know this is scary.
    You’re in my thoughts and prayers. if it helps, my pregnancy this time has been filled with scary moments – and they have turned out okay.
    At least so far.
    Take the time you need to think all this stuff through, and remember that like so many people have said, there are a lot of false positives – and this is just a preliminary test.

    sam November 28, 2007 at 1:15 pm

    You’re absolutely in my thoughts.

    Hang in there C. Everything will work out. ((((HUGE CYBER HUGS TO YOU)))

    Lori- Fairytales & Margaritas November 28, 2007 at 2:33 pm

    ((hugs)) no matter what you are strong and you’re a wonderful mother.

    Mama V November 28, 2007 at 3:23 pm

    Hi Catherine – no matter what anyone says, you will still worry, just as you would worry if you had a feeling that not everything was “normal” with Wonderbaby. You can’t help it. Nothing I can say will make you feel better, but know that many of us are thinking of you, praying for you, and wishing for a positive outcome to all of this. ((HUGS))

    Lydia November 28, 2007 at 3:33 pm

    I had the same test, same phone call, same results. My Level 2 u/s is a week from today, which is when they will be able to do a diagnostic.

    The word “abnormal” (as in results) rings in my head, despite the fact that the doctor told me NOT to worry, it’s just a screen that’s probably wrong anyway. So why did I have the test???

    Anyway, will be thinking of you…

    Tina November 28, 2007 at 3:38 pm

    I just did a CVS last week, since I’d rather know for sure and DNA don’t lie. I also live in a major metropolitan area where they commonly perform this procedure, so I wasn’t worried about the risks associated with it. However, we did decide what we’d do with the results before I did the test.

    Christina November 28, 2007 at 3:58 pm

    I’m sorry you’re going through so much stress and worry because of this.

    Although I know it won’t help ease the worry, it is only an early marker, and the odds are still in your favor. In some ways, I hate those early screenings, because they cause far more stress than relief.

    I’m hoping for the best for you.

    Mimi aka pz5wjj November 28, 2007 at 6:17 pm

    I’m so sorry you’re having to deal with this and go through this.

    I know nothing I can say can make you feel better. This sucks.

    Hopeful of a positive outcome with further testing.


    chichimama November 28, 2007 at 8:57 pm

    Thinking of you. How hard it must for you to being going through all of this. May your wait for answers be quick.

    glycerin November 28, 2007 at 9:50 pm

    I just wanted to reach out and give you a big hug. You won’t know anything for certain until you do the amnio.

    Thinking of you and sending you positive thoughts!

    much love.

    Miguelina November 28, 2007 at 10:41 pm

    I’m so sorry.

    I know exactly how you feel because I had the same test result.

    Maybe they can rush the amnio results for you? I was such a mess that they did that for me and we found out partial results in 3 days rather than 10. Those 3 days were the longest days of my life.

    Oh, I’m sending you a big hug – even though I’m a total stranger.

    Elizabeth November 28, 2007 at 11:01 pm

    Oh sweetie. I’m sending you all kinds of positive vibes and big virtual hugs. I would do anything for you, I hope you know that.

    Tere November 29, 2007 at 12:09 am

    Thinking of you and yours, dear. Fingers crossed, lots of hugs.

    ozma November 29, 2007 at 2:37 am

    Hoping, hoping, hoping. Wishing you didn’t have even the fear.

    the mad momma November 29, 2007 at 5:20 am

    wishing, hoping, praying that the sun will shine. stay strong …. God bless.

    Lori at Spinning Yellow November 29, 2007 at 7:53 am

    I hate the not knowing more than anything. Whatever the outcome you have tons of support. Thinking of you, sending hugs and hoping for a lifting of the dark clouds.

    radical mama November 29, 2007 at 11:50 am

    Wishing you hope and comfort. It’s inadequate, I know, but it’s all I can think to say.

    angi November 29, 2007 at 2:21 pm

    As soon as I read this, a video came to mind that I wanted to share with you.

    Then I read the comments & see that this seems to be something that happens often (false positives).

    But IF it is not, and IF you are looking for some positive enery, check out this video made by a Moher of a child with Downs. It is BEAUTIFUL! :)


    red pen mama November 29, 2007 at 2:56 pm

    I am sure I am repeating many things that have been said already but: I will be praying for you and for Sprout and for sun.


    TB December 3, 2007 at 10:40 pm

    Just catching up and wanted to add my voice to the many others who have sent love and support.
    Thinking of you and sending all my best.

    Fairly Odd Mother December 4, 2007 at 10:47 pm

    I’m appalingly late in wishing you nothing but the best of wishes as your baby continues to grow inside of you. Hugs and hope your next test goes well.

    AdventureDad December 14, 2007 at 3:43 am

    So sorry to hear. Stay positive and lets hope everything works out for the best.


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