A mom post tonight….
It’s become part of our routine to see Lily’s birth parents every few months. We really enjoy seeing them: watching the expression on their faces when they see how much she has grown and what she can do. There is something immensely fulfilling about watching her birth dad hold her for an entire meal and just feeling the love he has for her fill the room and we are always very aware that we hit the jack-pot when it comes to birth parents. We know that our situation is a little unique – most people think of open adoptions as exchanging photos and maybe a yearly visit – but despite my original thoughts, I’m so happy that this is the relationship we have, and will continue to have so that Lily can know her entire family – including her new little sister.
Lily’s birth parents had a beautiful baby girl earlier this year and we were able to set up a visit so we could meet her. It was certainly a bit surreal to sit across from the 4 of them and see the family that could have been – to see the resemblance between Lily and this new baby, to see what characteristics they share even though they’re not together: the short catnaps, sucking on their bottom lips, their tiny ears. We often make jokes about what Lily has “inherited” from us, but sometimes it’s incredibly cool to see genetics at work.
We had a visit to the Eye Clinic at Sick Kids last week, which is not one of Lily’s favourite places. Lily’s sight, prior to the Cardiac Arrest, was something that we were actually really pleased with. She was lucky enough to not have any of the eye issues that kids with Down Syndrome are more prone to (cataracts, issues with focus, etc). However, after her cardiac arrest, one of the biggest developments was a Cortical Visual Impairment and for a long time we were very fearful that she was completely blind. We have been lucky to see a massive improvement with her eyesight but her right eye still shows a significant strabismus (turning in) and we’re still having some issues with her tear ducts watering. So, after sitting through the dreaded eye drops and then cutting her nap short to have the doctors touch her eyes (ophthalmology appointments never go well in our house), it was decided that it’s time to book a surgery to fix both issues. We don’t have a date booked as of yet, and we’re also getting in touch with our pediatrician about setting up a complex care consultation to hopefully deal with some other issues while she’s out for this surgery (we’re hoping to minimize the number of times she has to be put under anesthesia). We don’t love the idea of surgery but when you weigh out the risk vs the benefits, we know that it’s time.