young girl with Down syndrome
Jade Small
Jade Small
December 24, 2023 ·  4 min read

After the first shock, mom feels “immensely proud” of her daughter with Down syndrome

Finding out you are pregnant leaves you with a whirlwind of emotions, for months you imagine what your baby will look like when it is born. You wonder if you are going to have a boy or maybe a girl, you think about what sort of parent you will be. Will you cope with the terrible two’s? If you have a daughter, will you be able to raise a strong independent lady? If you have a son, will he be a good man?

Alyse Biro was just like any other mother-to-be. She had all these thoughts and more. She told her story on Love What Matters. However, her baby was different, and she was not prepared in the slightest.

My pregnancy wore on with little complications. Nothing more than some heartburn, nausea, and exhaustion. The ultrasounds always looked great and I would specifically ask about amniotic fluid, her neck and length of her limbs. All of which I was told ‘looked great.’ In my 39th week I complained to the doctor that earlier that day at work I felt dizzy and had a headache. She wanted to me to go in for a stress test and ultrasound since I hadn’t had any of these symptoms for the duration of the pregnancy.

I had the ultrasound and waited in that hospital room and I was excited and nervous. I waited for what seemed like an eternity, looked at my husband and said, ‘something is wrong.’ Finally, I got the nurse to tell me I definitely was being admitted. They found fluid in the baby’s left lung and in her stomach on the ultrasound.

Alyse was rushed into the ER

Alyse recalls being petrified of what was happening as they rushed her into the emergency room for a C-section. Soon, however, her baby was born, and Alyse and her husband heard their daughter’s first cry. The new mother remembers the feelings of fear falling away and being replaced with love and joy.

In that same moment of joy, I heard the words. ‘She has characteristics of Down syndrome.’ The happiest moment of my life turned to the darkest.

baby with down syndrome
Courtesy of Alyse Biro via Love What Matters

Read: Mom Shares Honest ‘Review’ Of Her Baby With Down’s Syndrome, And 380K People Love It

Later that same night, Alyse had a talk with a geneticist. She was straight to the point and very blunt as she told Alyse that her daughter did appear to have the characteristics of Down syndrome. However, they would only be certain after blood results.

She went on to talk about Down syndrome and how things have changed for people with Down Syndrome as of now. Then, she said they are loved and in fact become ‘the pet of the school.’

baby girl with down syndrome
Courtesy of Alyse Biro via Love What Matters

This was the moment Alyse knew none of the things she’d imagined for her child would ever be. She thought of how her little girl would never be invited to sleepovers, and would never go to the prom. She’d never have a first kiss or be at the top of her class in school. She’d never get to see her little girl get married.

The anger Alyse felt soon turned into a realization

For the next few months I was locked in that room in my mind. Continuously drowning, gasping for air and using sheer will to force the tornado to stop…rewind…never come. The sadness consumed me like an angry fire I couldn’t put out. Three months in that room. Finally, finally I embraced it. Once I did, I saw who was there. It was my daughter standing there with her big marble colored eyes and blonde hair, telling me she was always there. What I thought was lost wasn’t her, it was me.

girl with down syndrome in the snow
Courtesy of Alyse Biro via Love What Matters

And then, the moment came when Alyse found herself. She realized that none of the things she imagined would be a measure of her daughter’s successes in life, because she would find her own ways of achieving.

Slowly I started to live in a new way. A way that was more free than I had ever been, which helped me see Felicity the way she is, not the way I thought she should have been. When at first I watched her struggle to crawl, I began to see her DRIVE to crawl. I no longer watched her from eyes of grief, anger, fear…but with awe and pride and always love.

girl with down syndrome sitting on step
Courtesy of Alyse Biro via Love What Matters

Even though she would sometimes find herself going back to her old way of thinking, she was now able to stop and realize that it was not about her. It was about Felicity.

You can follow their inspiring and beautiful journey on Instagram and YouTube.

Keep Reading: Dentistry Student Shares Touching Story of Being Raised by Father with Down Syndrome