The day after Ellie was born I read a poem by Emily Perl Kingsley called "Welcome to Holland" about what it's like to raise a child with a disability. At that moment it was perfect for me. It talked about the unexpected journey I was about to take. I liked how it explained this new adventure and I sent it to our family and close friends to help explain how Jess and I felt about Ellie.
You can read it here:
My best friend sent me a bouquet of tulips after Ellie was born and the card said "Ellie is the most beautiful tulip in Holland" and I absolutely loved it. I loved it so much I even picked a tulip stamp for my baby name necklace. It went perfectly with her big brother's disks. My family was complete.
As time has gone on, I have re-read the Holland story many times. I have to say that I still think it's beautiful but I also don't agree with it 100%. She says that it was a "very very significant loss". But I no longer feel this way. I did for about 2 days after Ellie was born. I grieved for the loss of the daughter I thought I was going to have. But the little girl I'm holding in my arms is who she was meant to be, from the moment she was conceived. She is the same baby that was kicking inside my tummy and who I would sing to while driving to and from work every day. She is perfect to me and I don't see the dream of what could have been as a sad thing. I think this is the trip Jesse and I were meant to take- we were meant to go to Holland all along!
Daughter - Loudon Wainwright III