Your baby has just been diagnosed with a genetic disorder. Before you can really grasp that, the doctor recommends that you and your partner have genetic tests to find out whether you are carriers. In other words, whether this disorder came from you. Which one of you? Either one? Both? It’s bad enough to find out your child is sick, will have life-long problems, or maybe even a really short life. Now you find out she got it from you. Nice. Really nice. ‘Course you’re also wondering about your other child. It’s going to be weeks before the results come in. You look at them. They look the same. Beautiful. But now, oh God, what now?
You always wanted three. But it all seems fraught now; how did family get so complicated?
Sure, sometimes pregnancies end badly. But you tried hard to do everything right. You both did. And they “had all their fingers and toes.” Then you wonder, how does it ever manage to turn out right? Friends without a care in the world—the worst thing their kids ever have had is a skinned knee!
You didn’t aim all that high, were happy just to have a little life. But now it seems like, well, that life is gone. You’ve been forced off the path, that wonderful, plain, and simple path of sunrise, sunset, with your kids carrying on after you’re gone. And their kids after that.