Bad Timing

Want to hear about bad timing? My nephew, my little sister’s first child was born around 4 am on August 7, 2014.

At 10 am that morning I was told that my 10 week old fetus had no heartbeat.

The next day, my 31st birthday would be spent physically ridding my body of the baby I had prayed for…for a year. 

I have a photo of me holding my beautiful nephew Jackson that day. I genuinely felt such happiness for my sister and brother in law but in the picture I can see the sadness and pain in my eyes.

I was broken. This was my second miscarriage.

Why can’t anything just be easy for me I thought? I was having a pity party for myself and going deeper and deeper into a hole. 

I had a long talk to God, to the universe, to whomever was listening that night.

I promised that if I was blessed with a baby that I would do anything to make sure that child would be kind and generous.

I would teach my child to  be giving and hard working.

If my prayers were answered I would do my best to repay the favor. 

Fast forward through IVF and on December 29, 2015 my prayers were answered.

I was blessed with the chunkiest, most perfect little boy, Dominic Robert. He made my heart explode every time I looked at him.

He was everything I had hoped for and more.

I was thinking ahead planning out his little life, picturing all his athletic events I would attend, listening to him tell me how  his day was and seeing him play and develop friendships with his cousin and all of my best friends’ children.

Well, around 2 years old Dominic did not seem to be developing as he should be. At 2.5 he was diagnosed with autism.

I was back in that hole that I had fallen into 3.5 years prior. I was overwhelmed by guilt, grief, sadness and anger.

Again, “why can’t anything just be easy?”  Time for another pity party.

Our journey quickly had shifted. What did this mean for Dominic?

What would his future look like?

Would I ever hear him speak?

Will he ever have a best friend?

Am I ever going to get to teach him how to play baseball?

I was in a vicious cycle of guilt and sadness.

Yesterday I had an epiphany. I was driving and had my two boys in the back seat.

I glanced in the rearview mirror and watched Dominic handing his little brother Mason a veggie straw and it hit me. I got exactly what I prayed so desperately for.

Dominic is THE sweetest, kindest little guy. And although I have never heard him call me Mom unprompted or say I love you, I know with every bone in my body how much we are connected.

Every morning we hear his bedroom door fly open,  followed by sprinting feet straight to our bed, jumping in and saying “take a nap” which is the signal to put him under the covers to snuggle.

Every day when either myself or my husband pick him up at his ABA center he greets us like he hasn’t seen us in a year.

He jumps for joy when his cousins come over. He is gentle with other children.

He always waits for kids at the top of the slide, lets them go first and then immediately follows giggling all the way down.

I look at him and my heart beams with pride. He works so hard for every single achievement and does it with a smile and positive attitude.

My prayers were answered the day Dominic was born. He has made my job easy.

At almost 4 years old he is already the kindest, hardest worker I know. 

Written by, Lindsay Dahlquist

I am Lindsay, mom of two boys. I have a wonderful husband Eric. Dominic just turned 3. and Mason and Mason is 10 months old. Dominic was diagnosed with ASD in May of 2018. He began ABA in September. I have been teaching a classroom of students with moderate to severe disabilities for the past 12 years and love what I do. I feel like it has prepared me for my life with Dominic.

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Finding Cooper's Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you're never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village....all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to my page!

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