Friday, August 03, 2007

There is hope for babies with Trisomy 13!

Trisomy 13 is a major reason behind late-term abortions in Canada. When I read about Trisomy 13 on this website, it made my heart sink:

Trisomy 13 children have multiple abnormalities. Some include heart defects, brain defects, cleft lip, cleft palate. The most severe are visual abnormalities, omphalocele, proboscis and holoprosencephaly.

Then I looked at the pictures of the children. I was expecting horribly disfigured children. They weren't-- a few had a cleft lip, but nothing really horrible.

Parents who didn't abort their child with Trisomy 13 have a different story.

Sure, some of the babies die soon after birth. Some don't. Some go into palliative care. Some grow up. And maybe there are struggles, but it doesn't mean their lives aren't rewarding or meaningful.

Here are some Trisomy 13 survivors:

Kimmie now is 19 years old and though she has limited speech lets us know what she wants seeing as she understands everything LOL . She loves going to school and hanging with her family. Kimmie did have a tracheotomy in 1997 due to severe sleep apnea but other than that she is in pretty good health.

Hi my name is Julianna Snell, I am the mother of Arianna Jolie Snell, born June 19, 2006 ( same day as mommy's birthday).
Three days later we were told she had Trisomy 13, we were given only a few days to be with her. After 12 days she was sent home, the doctors told us to take her home to enjoy what time we had left with her. She has thrived at home and was taken of Hospice care at 12 weeks.

Hannah turned 5 on Sept. 29th and is doing very well! She loves her pre-k class, and I couldn't be happier with her teachers and the kids in her class. Her teachers just absolutely love every one of the kids in there, you can tell, and they tell me over and over what a joy it is to have her in their class. I actually was early to pick her up one day and overheard her teacher telling another teacher how much she loves Hannah's laugh and how much fun she is in school because she is just so excited about learning. Now the teacher had no idea that I was there so this was just off the cuff...really nice to hear.

All this is to say that Trisomy 13 isn't necessarily a death sentence, nor does it mean that the child will have no quality of life.

We need to promote this view more in order to discourage abortions. It's a tragedy that so many people abort without knowing the full story because doctors paint such a bleak picture of the syndrome.

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