You often hear pregnant couples say they don’t care if their baby is a boy or girl as long as they’re healthy. I used to be one of those people. Then I had Quinlan.
Don’t get me wrong, no one would ever say “I’m happy with a boy or girl, as long as they can spend months in a hospital” but honestly, having Quinlan healthy or unhealthy, boy or girl, he was our baby and it is literally impossible to love him any more.
Of course, I would give anything to have him still here with us physically, growing up next to his little brother, watching him get excited over the sound of our voices, and feeling his mighty grip around our fingers. But that desperate longing doesn’t take away from the joy, happiness, laughs, and smiles that his “unhealthy” life brought us. It’s a tough life, but it’s a beautiful one. It’s full of so many dark times, but also little milestones that bring so much light and joy.
Quinlan wasn’t our “sick” child, he was, and still is, our child. And honestly, I could never picture him any other way. People have said they can now see him running and jumping, doing all the things he could never do. I’m not sure I can see him as that person. Quinlan was always our quiet observer, content to be snuggled and held, and I can’t imagine that has changed.
He was always meant to be exactly who he was.
Parenting any child is never easy. They could be as healthy as they come and you are still going to have frustrations, worries, and a need for bedtime to come hours sooner than it actually does. Parenting a child with a disease, syndrome or illness brings feelings you never knew existed, both good and bad. It makes you realize what should be a top priority, and what you can truly live without. It makes you look at life through a different set of eyes. As much as it takes away, it can also provide you with things you’d never know otherwise.
So, while it feels like it should go without saying, we all want the healthiest baby, everyone knows that. But just know that if your child isn’t born with the cleanest bill of health, while it is nothing short of scary and life changing, it is also just as beautiful and as full of love as you could have with any child.