new parents

‘She’s alive. I should be grateful.’ But I wasn’t. I was angry. I did everything in my power to ‘fix’ her.’: Mom to daughter with Cerebral Palsy shares journey, ‘I focus on what she CAN do’

“I was wheeled next to her incubator and remember seeing her full head of hair. But I didn’t feel happy. I felt helpless. I couldn’t hold her, bond with her, or breastfeed her. I remember thinking, ‘What do I do?’ I went to Dr. Google for answers, and that just led me into a downward spiral of despair. How could I raise a child with special needs? I didn’t even know how to raise a typical child.”

‘Why is your wife crying? Not everyone gets to have a perfect baby,’ the nurse said. We were shocked. I just wanted to be told everything was okay.’: Mom to son with Down syndrome says she’s in ‘the luckiest club there is’

“I heard whisperings at my bedside. I asked my husband, ‘Did you just hear what I heard? I think something is wrong with the baby.’ They looked little Henrik up and down, lifting him and setting him back down into the bassinet. I stared blankly in disbelief as my husband covered his eyes. ‘What does THAT mean?’ We couldn’t even form words. ‘This is very, very serious.'”

‘Michelle, we haven’t had sex in a year.’ My husband rolled over in bed with a blank look on his face.’: Couple stress importance of ‘boundaries’ in marriage, ‘You don’t owe your partner anything’

“My doctor’s cold hands pressed against my breasts. ‘No lumps, but let me process the urine sample.’ 5 minutes later, she retuned with a beaming look on her face. ‘You’re pregnant! Congrats!’ I’m…what? Who? How? ‘Infertile’ and on birth control, I was in utter disbelief! We went from a quiet little house in Suburbia to catapulted into parenthood. I had no energy or desire for intimacy. We hit the one-year mark completely sexless.”

‘Are you ready to hold your baby?’ She takes a deep breath, sits up as straight as she can. We’re very careful.’: Child loss photographer reminds grieving parents ‘this little life mattered’

“The room is still, almost silent. I meet their beautiful baby, I hold their baby, talk to their baby. All while taking a mental assessment of how much posing I can do. I ask who he got his beautiful wavy hair from, or his button nose or long toes. I talk, but not too much to overwhelm anyone. I work gently, efficiently. I capture every single detail. No one wants this. Their child existed. Their child was so loved, and so wanted.”

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