We are back after a short delay in posts!!!!
It hasn’t been due to lack of material that I have not posted in a while, but I had a bright idea. I’m a girl full of ideas, very few are good ideas but we fly with them anyway. I thought; you know what this family needs???? A litter of puppies!!! Fair to say the last few weeks have been quite busy, and chaotic. I am currently functioning on 3 hours descent sleep a night and my body weight in caffeine.
I have three miniature dachshunds, and allowed my boy and girl to have babies.
Albeit a little crazy at times, this has been the most incredible experience for all of us. The children have watched poppy grow, felt the kicks from within, and then saw puppies the moment they were born. I played midwife, although the constant ‘me help’ from George was neither required nor wanted.
She safely delivered 4 pups, two boys and two girls; all was going swimmingly. It was only at around 4 weeks that I noticed that one puppy wasn’t developing like the others were. He was the last to stand, last to cut teeth, he couldn’t walk well and showed signs of low muscle tone, he wouldn’t play with his siblings, facially he was built a little differently. Although I didn’t feel massively concerned I mentioned it to my vet. I explained all the things that I was seeing and stated that through observation it seemed like the lights were on for Rolo but no one was home.
The very last thing I expected him to say was that he believed he has the canine form of downs syndrome!!! It doesn’t affect the same chromosomes as it does in humans, but it is the best way to compare. I at this point inappropriately laughed, for quite some time. I had to apologise, and explain that this is just my life. I think my comment ‘I can’t even breed dogs right’ fell on stony ground. I really do need to know my audience better!!
So there I have it… who can say they have a little downs syndrome boy with a downs syndrome dog.
Rolo is doing well, like George is slower to develop but getting there.
The one pup I have managed to be a part from has gone to a close friend of mine Nicola. During half term we decided to go to a local deer park with our broods. This being my three children, 3 big dogs, 3 puppies, her 2 children and 2 puppies. 5 puppies were securely put in to willows pram, willow was strapped to my back and the three big dogs were either side of the crammed buggy on leads. To say we caused a scene and a stir would be the understatement of the century.
Obviously where you have large rock formations, the kids will want to climb up it. This was fine until George stood 40 ft up throwing rocks at others climbing up. While trying to shout at him and talk to cooing passer byers and still pretending like I was in control. It was when they said goodness you do have you hands full, I jovially said ‘oh I know but its such fun’ all the while thinking kill a kid George and we are doomed!!
Moving on from the rocks we made it to the stream slash river. Strolling alongside the billowing stream, George informs me that he has had an accident in his pants. Giving all dogs to Nicola, removing willow from my back, George and I go behind a tree to do a quick change. I blame this next request of mine on the situation I’m soon to find myself in. George predictably touches his poo, so I take him to the stream to wash his hands. As we move on from the tree George takes himself back to the river, except this time he is in thigh high, and I am resumed to being willows mode of transport. There I stand counting to three from the river bank willow strapped to me, asking George to get out of the water (as it’s a bloody freezing day) preying he doesn’t make me get to three as I’m not sure where I can go with this. Nicola, my loving friend films the whole experience rather than leaping to my aid like most good friends would.
While I was in stiff negotiations Nicola was enduring the girls trying to ascertain where the fairies lived, and more people wanting to look at puppies.
Finally after some tough warnings, and a desperate attempt to keep a straight face, George was out of the water. He got out of the water just in time for the heavens to open.
We are now the family with 5 children, one of which is sodden, 3 dogs and 5 puppies between us stood under a tree thinking that this is the clearing up shower.
On the walk back to the car, we are all wet, all finding this chaos quite funny. George makes his final venture to the stream; peony is quick to tell me where he is headed. To which I say’ at least I know where he is’, which to be honest made total sense in that moment!! Allow the flight risk to river walk, it was the only time that day where I actually knew where he was at all times.
I do have some fantastic friends, friends that will take my chaos and the drama that seems to unfold and laugh with me.
The BBC produced a programme recently called a life without downs, within it the discussion was the possibility of a future where people who had downs syndrome would be a less common place. The NHS wish to screen all pregnant women so they can terminate an effected pregnancy. This isn’t an issue I wanted to discuss in depth on here. However the lady who featured really stuck in my mind. She terminated her pregnancy following a tiny blood test telling her the baby she was carrying might have downs syndrome. She wanted a healthy baby and didn’t want a life like mine, and that of many others.
George is healthy!! He has ‘faulty’ wiring, but he is lucky to be fit and well!! It lead me to think, if these families could know how much fun life is, and if you wish to embrace ‘abnormal’ you find it’s actually better than normal. You change as a person for the better.
I get my strength from those around me, and I really wish that professionals would do more to help mums to be to see life is truly amazing even with trisomy 21!!