While pregnant, I was frustrated with people who comforted us by saying they were "praying for a miracle." As if an extra chromosome and multiple physical abnormalities could magically disappear. Despite my faith, this idea seemed naive. Besides, I'm the mother and all I prayed for was a few minutes with a breathing baby. After 20 days with Allegra, I now realize we've witnessed several miracles...
(1) After checking in to the hospital the night before my induction (Pitocin was to start around 5:30 a.m.) my body instead went into labor on its own around 2:30 a.m. Allegra was born before 5 a.m.
(2) During labor, Allegra's heart rate dropped significantly during every contraction. My midwife explained an epidural would lower my blood pressure, potentially slowing the baby's heart rate as well. I knew this and my birth plan requested no pain medications. Weak though, I eventually gave up on natural labor and asked for an epidural. Allegra was born 4 or 5 contractions later with no time for administration of an epidural.
(3) Only 10 percent of babies with Trisomy 18 survive birth.
(4) Six hours after her birth, we were able to bring Allegra home to be with her family.
(5) 20 days with Allegra so far. 480 hours. More than a few minutes.
Amazing. With a breathing Baby Allegra laying on my lap, I am humbled.