Patience

With my eighth pregnancy, the question that people ask me most often has surprised me. No, not whether I’m rich – to which I always reply yes, I am, because anyone who has children is rich. Nor whether my house is a mansion – to which I reply no, it’s not, because we have a room for the boys and one for the girls, whatever their number. No, the question I hear the most is, “where do you get the patience for so many kids?”. I reply in a spirited tone, saying that patience comes with the child delivery kit.(…)

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When are you having an amniocentesis?

This question to a 46-year old pregnant woman is so common it deserves some attention here. My response is quite naturally that I don’t do amniocentesis. And then the surprise reaction, “but isn’t it compulsory at your age?” Amniocentesis is an invasive pre-natal diagnosis that holds a minimum risk of miscarriage (generally 1 out of 100 to 300, depending on the expertise of the doctor and the gestation period) and has a sole purpose – to detect genetic malformations in the baby, or to say it plainly, to check if the baby has Trisomy 21 (Down syndrome). There are diseases(…)

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Surprise

Dinner-time, end of May. I place a beautiful red box on the table tied up with a bow. A present for everyone. The kids come into the kitchen and take a seat. “What’s this Mum?” they ask. “Is it a box of chocolates?” But Frankie looks over at Clare: “Where have I seen a box on the dinner table before?! Clare, I think we’ve seen a few scenes like this before… Is it possible?!” I try to look serious. “No, it’s not chocolates. It’s a Christmas present:” “Christmas?”. Now curiosity is raging. “Sara will be the one who has the(…)

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