Twitter June 29, 2012
I got the phone call the other day. Our answering machine picked it up and I heard the familiar voice of the Chief of Genetics from our local hospital.
I dove for the phone, fumbled and shouted, “Hello, Hello?”
The doctor’s first words were, “You still have to add Baby Dunk to your answering machine message.”
She apologized for calling earlier and told me Baby Dunk does not carry the same dystrophin deletion as Mr. Sensitive. That means that Baby Dunk does not have Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (or at least does not have the same kind as Mr. Sensitive).
Then she asked about how Little Miss Adorable and Mr. Sensitive were doing. She is aware of Mr. Sensitive’s school issues, and asked about them.
The conversation felt like chatting with a hip Aunt. She shops in New York and a visit with her means I make careful notes on her clothing. She jokes about shopping for Prada with Little Miss Adorable.
She is also the smartest woman I know. She holds information about statistics, medical procedures, general medicine, a host of genetic conditions, and the family’s own situation in her head. She sees countless folks with genetic quirks and remembers them as people.
And that is how we approached the situation with Baby Dunk.
We wanted another baby. No one ever wants a baby with a disability or a genetic quirk. But, we wanted a baby. And the risk of genetic quirks (Prader-Willi Syndrome or Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy in our case) was one we were willing to take.
We did not bother getting any prenatal testing when I was pregnant. It wouldn’t make any difference anyway. We wanted a baby.
Because even if Baby Dunk has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, he would be our baby. That’s what’s important.
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