In February of Ben’s first grade year I discovered that I was pregnant. Our immediate reaction to the news was unbelievable joy. It took us back to one of the conversations we had with Ben’s first neurologist, Donald Taylor, not long after he was diagnosed. Dr. Taylor told us one of the best things that could happen for Ben was to be blessed with a sibling. He said that delayed children who are able to watch a younger, normally developing child grow, learn a tremendous amount through play and imitation. We were hesitant to tell anyone at first because we had experienced three unsuccessful pregnancies while we were in Charleston. We decided to wait until the second trimester before we notified family and friends, which meant a lot of people were whispering behind my back about my recent weight problem. We also decided, so we could be completely informed about what to expect, that I would undergo what is called a CVS, or Chorionic villous sampling. This is a form of prenatal testing for chromosomal or genetic disorders in the fetus. It entails sampling of the placental tissue and testing it for chromosomal abnormalities. This procedure is more invasive than the more prevalent amniocentesis, but the advantage is that is can be performed at the end of the first trimester as opposed to early in the second trimester as with the amnio. Our reasoning was that we wanted to be able to answer the questions that would no doubt be on everyone’s mind about the baby’s health. This would answer those, and give us one less thing to wonder about. By the twelfth week we would not only know whether the baby had a trisomy, but we would also know whether Ben would have a little brother or little sister.
Next up… The pros and cons of CVS testing. .